Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) owns several patents that is related to Google Instant. Yahoo! SVP of search and a former search product leader at Google Shashi Seth created a similar service five years ago.
Yahoo!’s instant search service was created through the acquisition of AlltheWeb. AlltheWeb.com was a small search engine that Yahoo! bought to help users predict what they were looking for as they were typing. The outcome was Yahoo! Instant Search. Speech bubbles of results popped up below the search box as you typed.
Yahoo! had filed patent applications that were related to Yahoo! Instant Search as well. Seth said he worked on an instant-search service when he was at Google in 2006, but Google engineer Ben Gomes said that work on the service started in the Fall of 2009.