If you’ve recently updated your AT&T or Sprint Samsung Galaxy S3, I’m sure you would’ve noticed one glaring omission from your phone’s home screen: the Google Search Bar. According to reports online, it looks like the latest update to Samsung’s flagship device removes the universal search functionality from the device. As to why they did it? “A precautionary measure to ensure that US consumers may enjoy using our innovative products without interruption.”
Now, for those of you not in the know, Apple previously took Samsung to court for infringing its universal search patent, and it looks like this is Samsung’s way of dealing with the problem. No word on whether the removal of this feature will be permanent, but for those of you who use this feature often, you’re better off looking for a third party alternative instead of waiting for it to come back. Personally I don’t even use Google’s universal search feature (I have it disabled), and I prefer using shortcuts to apps and contacts on my homescreen instead.