I read a number of predictions about SEO’s demise after the launch event and those predictions don’t seem to have any real basis. I think people predict SEO’s demise every time Google makes big changes to its search algorithms and those predictions always seem to be intent on causing hysteria in the SEO community. What Google Instant seems to mean is more that people’s search habits will change when they can bring up new results depending on what they type, as they type it.
One of the questions in the Q&A after the main event was whether page 2 of the search results page becomes irrelevant, perhaps even the bottom half of the screen. I think that may start to happen and more because people can refine their search results on the fly and that ability may obviate the need for a second page of search results more often.
What I am really excited to see is the mobile implementation and seeing Google Instant make its way into search bars in browsers (the Chrome implementation should be pretty cool when it rolls out).
Here is the video from the launch event. It is long but worth watching.