There’s no debating that “google” is a verb. If you wondering about something, you just open a web browser and “google it.”
But for my 7-year-old son and the small circle of friends and cousins he hangs out with, whenever I’m around and they want to know something (that I don’t automatically know), they tell me to, “Ask the iPhone.”
And I might Google it for them, or I might use an app. But I inevitably get them an answer that satisfies whatever question they asked within a minute. (The last one was, “Ask the iPhone how many minutes there are in a year, Dad.” The answer is 525,948.766, by the way. And I got that from Bing, oddly enough.)
The point being that, because we carry our permanently internet-connected devices with us all the time, the window through which we peer at information has been lifted from the platform to the device level. For an emerging generation it’s not all about Google’s robust informational data store as it was for us early inhabitants of the web. It’s about the multitudinous entry points to knowledge that a mobile, connected device affords us.