Google reportedly considering paid subscription for AI-powered 'premium' search engine

The supposed change to Google's search engine would place premium AI-powered features behind a paywall.


It would appear that Google is set to make a major change to its search engine services. The company is reportedly working on an AI-powered “premium” search engine, for which it will charge a paid subscription. If Google does go through with the change, it will be one of the first times ever that the company has strapped a paywall to one of its core product offerings.

Google’s supposed plans to implement this AI-powered search engine come via a report from the Financial Times, which claimed to have spoken with several anonymous sources familiar with the matter. Those sources claimed Google is looking at options to include AI-driven search features alongside its existing paid subscription services, which includes access to its Gemini AI assistant for use in existing products like Gmail and Google Docs. FT’s sources shared that engineers are currently working on the technology that would form the foundation of this service, but there has been no formal decision from leadership on when or if it will launch yet.

Google Gemini logo
Google may be planning to supplement its existing premium services like its Gemini AI assistant with AI-powered search engine features.
Source: Google

Google has had an interesting time chasing after AI trends in big tech. The company recently attempted to launch an AI-powered image generation tool with Gemini, but quickly paused access to the service when the service began producing inaccurate images of historical figures. That hasn’t stopped it from continuing development with products like Genie, which its DeepMind Open Endedness Team developed to generate 2D playable platformer games.

Hit or miss, these products and services have been tertiary to Google’s main products. This upcoming proposal could change that drastically if Google goes through with it. With the AI trend seemingly not dying down anytime soon, we’ll share updates as they happen if Google does, indeed, launch AI features for its search engine. Stay tuned for more details.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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