Ina Fried at CNET not only has news and an email from Live Search Senior Vice President Satya Nadella on the much rumored but now soon to be internally released Kumo.com beta, but she has a screenshot as well:
Quite a lot of info is listed on the page, so here’s the top ^ and bottom:
Notice that a snippet of the Live.com home page image (today’s image in the US is of Ellis Island) appears in the header. The “your history” section that Imran spotted is included, and the Categorized Listings are present, too. Our own Chris even spotted the inline video at the bottom of a search last night. In the email, Nadella is upbeat about what Live Search v.next can accomplish:
In spite of the progress made by search engines, 40 percent of queries go unanswered; half of queries are about searchers returning to previous tasks; and 46 percent of search sessions are longer than 20 minutes. These and many other learnings suggest that customers often don’t find what they need from search today.
We believe we can provide a better and more useful search experience that helps you not just search but accomplish tasks. During the test, features will vary by country, but you’ll see results organized in a way that saves you more time. An explorer pane on the left side of results pages will give you access to tools that help you with your tasks. Other features like single session history and hover preview help accomplish more in search sessions.
While the beta is apparently slated to be internal to Microsoft only at this point, its encouraging that we’ve already seen a number of these changes appear in the wild, and hopefully we’ll continue to get hints at what’s to come. But it looks like we’ll still have to wait for a final name, as Nadella clearly defines it: “Kumo is the codename we have chosen for the internal test.”