Google Product Search was already a handy shopping aid, but today's addition of local inventory info makes it essential. And like most great ideas, it's only going to get better with time.
The new feature works on the iPhone and any PalmOS or Android device. When you search for Shopping results, Google now returns not only pricing information for the item you're looking for, but a blue dot indicates which retailers have it nearby and whether they've got it in stock. It's basically there to save yourself a trip.
The catch—there's always a catch!—is that currently only a few retail partners are signed up. There are some major ones in there, like Best Buy, Sears, and Williams-Sonoma, but the feature needs participation from both big box stores and local merchants to be truly helpful. You hear that, sellers of goods? Go here now to sign up. Buyers of goods, you're beautiful. Just keep doing what you're doing, and look for that blue dot. [Google Mobile Blog]