Google is now displaying song lyrics directly at the top of its search results with links to the Google Play store, as first noticed by SeroundTable. If you search for the name of the song plus the word “lyrics,” there’s a chance the first several verses will pop up automatically.
Here’s what it looks like:
This move makes sense for Google. The has been steadily increasing the amount of information it lets users see on its page without having to click a third-party link. If you search for a proper noun, like, for example, Pink Floyd, Google pulls a bunch of information from Wikipedia, the World CIA Factbook, and other sites to give you some basic information about it.
For Google, this will drive traffic to the Play Store and it will make finding information as quick and seamless as possible (one of Google’s self-professed goals).
It could also wreak havoc for song lyrics sites like Genius (formerly RapGenius), the well-funded lyrics and document annotation startup, as well as a bunch of long-standing lyrics sites like AZLyrics.com and SongLyrics.com.
A lot of these older lyrics sites are plagued with really intrusive pop-ups and other kinds of ads, so it’s a win for users as well.
It’s unclear how broad this rollout is, though. For example, we couldn’t find lyrics for Brittney Spears, Bright Eyes, or Van Morrison. We did find lyrics to a few Fleetwood Mac songs.
Tom Lehman, Genius cofounder, told Business Insider via email that he thinks Google is ranking its own product above one that’s better for the user though, since Genius has more in-depth information and analysis. However, he concedes, it’s nice that Google’s page is free of advertisements.
“Overall we’re happy to see Google take an interest in improving lyrics online,” he writes, “And we’d love to collaborate with them to create the best lyric experience the Internet has ever seen.”
Business Insider reached out to Google for more information about this test.
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