Google enabled default search backgrounds today for its popular search engine.
The personalization feature was enabled by default for users and Google had originally planned to disable automatic images tomorrow. VP of Search Product and User Experience at Google, Marissa Mayer, confirmed the company had disabled the backgrounds early. "Actually as of now :)" Mayer twittered in response to another user tweeting that Google would return to normal tomorrow. Mayer previously confirmed "we will be back to normal tomorrow", when questioned earlier by Twitter users.
A quick search of Twitter earlier today showed that the majority of people disliked the change and preferred the classic Google. Many were unhappy about being forced to see a custom background instead of opting in for the feature. Mayer commented on the removal of default search backgrounds, "there was supposed to be a link explaining what was going on (one day, etc.), due to a bug it wasn't showing." Both Mayer and Google acted quickly to the mounting criticism and axed the change.
The custom backgrounds feature on Google allows users to add their own background (image must be 800 x 600 or larger), and can upload an assortment of file extensions from .jpeg, .tif, .tiff, .bmp, .gif, .psd (Photoshop), .png, .tga, and selected RAW formats. You can also select photos from My Picasa web photos, public gallery and editor's picks (as selected by Google).
Microsoft's Bing search engine has provided changing daily backgrounds since the service launched in May 2009. The backgrounds, with handy facts, have proved popular across the Internet with some choosing to archive the various International versions. Microsoft saw the funny side of Google imitating Bing for the day, "How intriguing to see friends at Google borrowing the Bing homepage photography idea," tweeted Peter Bale, executive producer of the MSN UK network. Microsoft's Europe twitter account also tweeted "We've lost a background image, if found please return to bing.com ;)".