The accessible floating search bar is comparable to Android 13’s.Google’s continuous Pixel changelog is endearing in some way. Customers are aware that purchasing a Pixel smartphone guarantees they will receive the newest Android features first, and owing to quarterly Pixel Feature Drops, this is now even more common. The initial euphoria surrounding a new smartphone often wears off in the quick-paced electronics world. However, the Pixel’s three-month Feature Drop cycle keeps your smartphone up to date, useful, and fresh. Regarding the last issue, it appears like the Google Search bar will see some enhancements with December’s feature drop.
Google has been working to enhance the universal search function of the Pixel Launcher for some time. A recent flag discovered by Android Authority in the Android 14 QPR1 beta appears to suggest Google will soon add a new “floating search bar” to its launcher in multiple places. Users may soon have personalised search bars practically everywhere on their phones as a result.
Although there were earlier, more constrained app search tools, the improved universal search capability first became available with Android 12. Currently, Google appears to be experimenting with changing this bar to a floating “G” pill towards the bottom of the app drawer interface and incorporating an additional search bar at the bottom of the recent apps interface. This feature can be accessed by tapping the search field at the top of the Pixel Launcher’s app drawer.
A flag with the name “floating search bar” was found in the first QPR1 beta by Mishaal Rahman, an Android Police contributor. Rahman discovered that after activating the flag, the search bar is now located nearer to your thumb while using keyboard programs like Gboard and SwiftKey. Once the change is live, you’ll see the search bar is now just above the keyboard’s suggestion strip, allowing you to move the cursor without overextending if you need to modify your query after you start typing.
Rahman’s testing demonstrated the reason why Google used the term “floating search bar” to describe this feature flag: you are no longer required to reach up the screen to find something in one of your apps or modify a search. In the spirit of full transparency, the latter was theoretically already available if you turned on the Pixel Launcher’s “Always show keyboard” feature, which will be renamed to “Swipe up to start search” in Android 14; nevertheless, this approach obviously provides you more control.
This search experience appears to be a noticeable improvement over the thumb gymnastics we’ve been doing, at least according to Rahman’s demo video. We aren’t expecting this feature to be available before the December Pixel Feature drop, if it even does. It seems likely that this function will only be available on Pixel phones, or at least those that support the Pixel Launcher. But with the October 4 Made By Google event quickly coming, we won’t be short of Google-related news in the interim.