Google, Get Your Arrow Keys Straight

Google Maps Street View uses arrow key input extremely well. When viewing a street as the Google Car sees it, simply push the up arrow key to move forward, down to move back, and left or right to turn.

But on Google’s search engine results page, when you type a query and press ‘Enter’, a blue arrow appears highlighting the first listing (in this case, an ad).

(click to enlarge)

Pressing the down arrow key will take you to the second listing and pressing the up arrow key will then take you back to the first.

However, if you then press the up arrow again, the cursor will appear in the search bar. Now, the up and down arrow keys do nothing. Pressing the down arrow will not take you back to the first listing – it will simply do nothing.

When doing searches, my hands are naturally on the keyboard, so I find it easier to use the arrow keys to navigate among listings rather than a mouse. But this functionality of Google’s makes it difficult to do that.

I just can’t fathom how Google can get arrow-key navigation so right on their Street View feature and so very, very wrong on their search engine results pages, which are their core business.

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