Google has rolled its popular 'Labs' test feature to its Tool Bar, with My Location and a Simplified Chinese feature the first to emerge on what is, for now, a feature for Internet Explorer only.
Labs has had a huge impact in Gmail, where users can add things like a Save and Archive button, have multiple email inboxes or even set their account to give them a simple test to prevent drunken email mistakes.
The Google Labs sit has also been popular, and now the concept has arrived for IE users on the Google toolbar – one of the most downloaded add-ons for browsers.
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My Location was launched on Mobile in September 2008, but with more and more people using laptops the functionality has now been brought to computers.
"With Toolbar with My Location, both Google Maps and the included Maps gadget automatically center on your current location," says the Google blog.
"Similarly, you can just do a search like [thai food], and you will receive a list of nearby restaurants and more local Google search results."
The second new arrival is a simplified Simplified Chinese Toolbar where 'users will be able to translate pages with a single click and manage bookmarks with a new sidebar.'
Forum for new ideas
The new Labs feature comes with the normal proviso from the Google team who conclude: "A few things to keep in mind as you check out Toolbar Labs: It's a forum to test out new ideas, so some of these ideas will make it into the standard Toolbar, but others may not.
"Also, Labs versions are not as well-tested as beta versions, so they may be slightly more unstable."