Google reveals universal URL links, search results deep-linking into iPhone apps ahead of Google I/O

Andrew Sadauskas /

With just hours to go until the Google I/O conference, the search giant has unveiled a number of updates including deep linking for content in iPhone apps in search results and universal URLS.

The first major feature, revealed on the company’s official blog, is the company’s link shortening service can now be used to deep-link to content inside a company’s Android and iOS apps, as well as to a website.

When a user clicks on a link, Google will determine what device they use and whether they have the relevant app installed. If they do, they will be directed to the content within the app, and if not, they will be directed to the same content on the web.

Google has also announced its search results will begin deep-linking to content within apps for iOS devices.

While Google has been doing deep-app linking for Android apps since November 2013, this is the first time the company has deep-linked apps for an operating system other than its own.

App developers will need to set up their apps for app indexing, set up their website for deep app indexing, and express their interest. Further information about Google’s URL shortening service is available on this page.

Andrew Sadauskas

Andrew Sadauskas is a former journalist at SmartCompany and a former editor of TechCompany.