Yesterday, Google also confirmed that it launched a new algorithm at the end of February to ensure that the recommended snippets represent the most accurate and timely or new answers for the search. Pandu Nayak from Google said: "A new algorithm update improves our systems' understanding of which information remains useful over time and becomes obsolete more quickly. This is particularly useful for recommended snippets"
It is not clear whether that was the unconfirmed chatter about a possible February update, but Danny Sullivan said that this update was launched at the end of February:
It went live at the end of February this year.
– Danny Sullivan (@dannysullivan) August 1, 2019
Back to this update, as I discussed yesterday in Search Engine Land, it aims to ensure that the recommended excerpts, when it matters, show new content and information. So if you ask Google a question and the answer is better if it is more up to date, then Google wants the fragment shown to be fresher.
For example with upcoming holidays that are not before 2018, but now before 2019:
But not the terrible example we showed last month (best smartphone for product photography) in which the iPhone 7 from 2015 is still displayed when we have iPhone X devices and Pixel 3s and soon Pixel 4s.
To be honest, a search on (best smartphone camera) shows a well-recommended excerpt:
Google post more examples, such as recall information and updates for shows and events, and more.
Sometimes freshness counts when it comes to recommended fragments. That's why we made a change earlier this year to better identify when we need to show new content. Today we share more about this in our blog post: https://t.co/ADkAFfOHQ4
– Google SearchLiaison (@searchliaison) August 1, 2019
Forum discussion on twitter.