Google's annual 'Year in Search 2023' lists, showcasing the attention-grabbing people, topics, events, and locations that resonated with Singaporeans this year, has been unveiled.
Among the top trends this year, Singaporeans demonstrated a keen interest in essential events, memorable experiences, and strategies to cope with increasing costs, coupled with a growing interest in the emerging sphere of Artificial Intelligence (AI).
Xiuxian Ho, Communications Manager at Google Singapore, stated, "Google Search was launched 25 years ago to help people find answers to questions big and small."
"Likewise in 2023, we continued to connect Singaporeans to the information they were looking for - from keeping abreast of local and global events, exploring new activities in the country and discovering the world of AI."
"This year, we have also reimagined the way we search with new generative AI capabilities." These new AI capabilities encompass concepts like the 'Search Generative Experience' designed to help Singaporeans comprehend topics faster, reveal viewpoints and insights, and accomplish tasks more efficiently.
Despite the strain of rising living costs, Singaporeans demonstrated a robust desire for new experiences. The top trending event for this year was the scramble among local 'Swifties' to snag tickets to Taylor Swift's 'The Eras Tour' through Ticketmaster, and the community effort to decode the 1989 (Taylor's Version) vault track titles on Search.
Other prominent activities that saw high interest included the artistically immersive Van Gogh: The Immersive Exhibition, and Halloween Horror Nights 2023.
Notably, 2023 was a year that celebrated major triumphs and bid poignant farewells. Michelle Yeoh made history as the first Asian woman to win Best Actress at the Oscars, while the world, and especially Friends fans, bade goodbye to loved actor Matthew Perry. Locally, the passing of Creative Technology founder Sim Wong Hoo and acclaimed actor Timothy Nga were also marked.
Throughout 2023, Singaporeans used Google to understand global matters such as the War in Israel and Gaza, the Turkey Earthquake, and the chilling murder of Hong Kong model Abby Choi. They also stayed abreast of technological advancements, particularly in the field of Generative AI, proving once again the increasing impact and relevance of AI in our lives.
Youtube's list of top trending videos and creators, which entertained Singaporeans this year, also showed interesting trends. Videos that offered deeper insights into the Singaporean lifestyle made up a third of the top trending videos this year. Among these were the Polling Day broadcast of the Presidential Election, videos on how in-flight meals onboard Singapore Airlines are prepared, and local creator Naomi Neo's journey of building her dream glass house.
This rich diversity of interests and the adoption of technological advancements such as AI paints a fascinating picture of Singapore's digital landscape in 2023, reflecting the vibrant pulse of this unique island nation.