Guidelines Specific to Android Devices
While reading the Google Search Quality Evaluator Guidelines, I was surprised at the explicit instructions from Section 12.9, “when rating Device Action queries and Device Action Result Blocks, including queries for installing or opening apps, please assume that queries were issued on an Android device unless explicitly stated otherwise in the instructions.”
These instructions not only validate the accuracy of an article I read earlier in the year about Google testing from Android devices, but also bring up a curiosity of mine. If their evaluators are testing Device Action queries and Device Action Result Blocks from an Android device, what percent of those evaluators would take the time to switch devices and check iOS for the quality of organic results? There could be a large percentage that would; however, in the introduction paragraph for 12.9 Rating Your Phone Issues it states, “we understand that raters using different phones, operating systems, and browsers may have different experiences. In general, do what you would do naturally, and rate based on your experience.” This suggests to me that there might be some Quality Evaluators who never switch to iOS to rate their tasks.
I think we should include Android devices in our process for QA Audits and tech audits due to the fact that Google is stressing use of these devices to their evaluators. With Voice Search coming into play and Google Now pulling information “you might be interested in” on your personal Android device, I think utilizing all operating systems could be something of value.
I find this to be important because even though at this point when you pull up separate browsers the Google results are the same probably 99/100 times, this could be something they are working to change in the near future. There are some differences at this moment, but they are very small (referring to Chrome’s Autocomplete Quick Answer function discussed a few meetings ago). And as Apple is one of Google’s largest competitors due to iPhones and Androids, I wouldn’t be surprised if Google started adding new features to Android-only operating systems (besides, of course, the Google Now Launching function, but I have been told Google Now is available on iPhones.)