Currently on Windows 8, when you use the Search Charm, you are automatically taken to the full-screen Apps Search page. In this full-screen page, you have the ability to search for an app, file, or setting. With the upcoming Windows 8.1 update, things are changed for the better.
In the recent leaked build (9374) of Windows 8.1 Pro Preview, we catch our first glimpse of how the new Search Charm works. In essence, once you fire open the Search Charm, you will see a search pane on the right side of the screen. No matter what you are working on, you will no longer have to see a full-screen search page. Users can now search for something while working on another app.
It seems that Microsoft is shifting towards a 'universal search' feature that not only lets you search for a setting, app, or file, but also be able to search the web right from the Search Charm. Of course, the web search will obviously be powered by Bing. Having a universal search feature just makes things a bit more organized and easier to use, so it is a welcomed change.
Again, features can be added or removed before the update becomes final and we are expecting a public preview build to be released during Build 2013 in June. In the mean time, you can check out a video walk through of the leaked build.