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Google unveils search product for small businesses

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Google late on Wednesday unveiled the Mini, a new hardware product aimed at helping small businesses add search functionality to their public Web sites and giving employees more tools to find information quickly on internal networks.

Google gets a small percentage of its revenue from its Google Search Appliance, which is priced from $32 000 to more than $500 000 and is sold mainly to big companies looking to search company Web sites and intranets.

The Web search leader aims to extend its reach with the Mini, which has fewer bells and whistles and sells for just under $5 000. For example, it can search 50 000 documents compared with the 15 million that can be handled by Google`s top-end Search Appliance.

Google also said it has beefed up its Search Appliance to search structured data stored in widely used databases from companies like Oracle and IBM, said Dave Girouard, GM of Google Enterprise.

The hardware also supports several new languages and includes new security features related to controlling employee access to information.

Google, based in Mountain View, California, made a splash last summer with its $1.7 billion auction-style initial public offering.

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