Google has introduced a prototype TV programme search feature that will display screen grabs of shows.
Google Video is a search engine that allows users to search the text linked to TV shows, including news clips, but it will not allow users to play video clips because of rights issues.
Google is following Yahoo, which launched a similar video search facility at the end of last year that includes content from the BBC.
Once rights issues with broadcasters are ironed out it is expected that Google, Yahoo and others will eventually offer their users streamed news and entertainment clips along with standard internet search materials.
At first however, the technology used by Google and Yahoo will largely be tied to agreements with a limited number of broadcasters, allowing both sides to make money from advertising and subscriptions.