Google Software Development Engineer Interview Questions

Updated Sep 13, 2014
Updated Sep 13, 2014
52 Interview Reviews

Interview Experience

Interview Experience

52%
30%
16%

Getting an Interview

Getting an Interview

53%
18%
14%

Interview Difficulty

3.7
Average

Interview Difficulty

Hard

Average

Easy

52 Candidate Interview Reviews Back to all interviews

Sort: Popular Date Difficulty
  1. 2 people found this helpful  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Anonymous Interview Candidate
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 4 weeks - interviewed at Google in August 2012.

    Interview Details

    Two technical phone interviews

    Interview Questions
    • What's the tracking algorithm of nearest location to some friends that are located in a grid region?   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  2.  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Mountain View, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 4 months - interviewed at Google in April 2012.

    Interview Details

    I was first contacted via LinkedIn and then a follow up phone call, was called by the recruiter twice and we talk about my personal interest in those two calls.
    A third call was scheduled to test my software engineering skills.
    After a successful phone interviews I was contacted for an onsite interview.
    The paid for everything, plane tickets, car rental, hotel and food.
    The onsite was difficult and pretty tiring, it was about 6 different interviews from 8 am to 2pm stopping for lunch only.

    Interview Questions
    • Most unexpected question: Does it feel right to correlate a dithering algorithm to a binary search function?   Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  3.  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Mountain View, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    Application Details

    The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Google in February 2012.

    Interview Details

    Phone interview included using Google Docs as an electronic white board, on which I had to write a JavaScript function and some pseudo code for a simple algorithm. That went well.
    The on site interview was the opposite, except for the nice HR person who sounded supportive and encouraging. She reminded me to talk about order of complexity for each piece of code. There were six interviews, 45 minutes each.
    First interview, I was asked to write a recusive function to print all the possible words from the characters the user just typed. It was simple enough, but I missed one step and did not have enough time to recover.
    The second interview was another programming exercise and I nailed it.
    The third was more about doing dynamic layouts using CSS and how different browsers render them.
    The fourth interviewer was suppose to be the hiring manager. He took me to the cafeteria to get food and led me to our meeting room, which was hijacked by another group. We found another room which was half filled with broken furniture, not very appetizing. To top it off, he was busy looking at his cell phone and told me to just eat! I ate quickly and tried to engage him in a conversion, but was not very successful.
    The fifth person told me he was a substitute, cause his boss was pulled off at the last minute. Obviously he was not prepared so he spent all the time asking me how to improve web page performance, which was his specialty so there was no way I could impress him.
    I was so discouraged by this time that I just wanted to go home.

    Interview Questions
    • Browsers running javascript is single threaded, how can we make AJAX calls in the backgroung?   View Answers (2)
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  4. We want your feedback – Is this interview information helpful to you?  Yes | No
  5.  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Mountain View, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took 2+ weeks - interviewed at Google in September 2011.

    Interview Details

    I met the company's representative on campus and applied through their website and I received an email soon after asking me to select my preferences for the on-campus interview. The interview was tough, but if someone is thorough with the topics and has practiced quite a few problems then it should be manageable.

    Interview Questions
    • Given a a new dictionary of words in English alphabets but the ordering of the alphabets are not necessarily as the English alphabets, that is, say c comes a in the new alphabet series. Hence, the dictionary would also contain words in a different ordering than the usual dictionary. If you are given enough words in this new dictionary so that you can find enough relationships between the new series, find the new series.   View Answer
    No Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  6.  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Chantilly, VA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Chantilly, VA
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took a day - interviewed at Google in September 2011.

    Interview Details

    Professional, four people interviewed, very professional, and as expected whole process went smooth

    Interview Questions
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview
  7. 1 person found this helpful  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  New York, NY
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in New York, NY
    Application Details

    I applied online. The process took 1 week - interviewed at Google in July 2011.

    Interview Details

    2 Initial Phone Interviews followed by 3 day schedule of on-site interviews with interview on 1 day at the Port Authority of New York office.

    Interview Questions
    Reasons for Declining

    Salary

    Declined Offer
    Neutral Experience
    Difficult Interview
  8.  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Cambridge, MA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Cambridge, MA
    Application Details

    I applied through college or university. The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Google in December 2010.

    Interview Details

    Had a pre screening phone interview with the HR who described the different teams working the Cambridge office, then had a technical phone interview with one of the developers in the team. Finally I was called in for a full day of technical interviews.

    Interview Questions
    • How would you design and develop a URL shorting service   View Answer
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  9.  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Seattle, WA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Seattle, WA
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 3 weeks - interviewed at Google in September 2010.

    Interview Details

    Google contacted me and told me that they were looking for developers in the Bay Area and New York City. Their internal recruiter set up an interview with one of their developers.

    The interview was on the phone, as well as via a google docs. The interviewer did not know how to start the interview, so I asked "do you want me to tell you about projects I am currently working?" He said that was a good idea, but I could tell he was not listening because he was eating. I'm serious. Turns out he was 23 years old, and it was obvious he did not want to be doing the interview.

    He asked a couple of puzzle-type coding questions, which I kind of flubbed, but I talked through the problems and data-structures. I didn't find the cute coding "trick" he was looking for obviously and told me I should interview for a tester position -- because Google is looking for "hard-core" programmers.

    While I've been writing software for over 17 years, I have never tested software -- but he didn't know that because, well, he never looked at my resume.

    I thanked him for his time, and asked him what product he worked on: Google Chat.I do not think that product exists anymore.

    Overall: Unprofessional, rude, condescending, slightly humiliating, irritating.

    Interview Questions
    • It was unexpected that he didn't actually ask any real questions --they just want puzzle-solvers.   View Answer
    No Offer
    Negative Experience
    Difficult Interview
  10.  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Mountain View, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    Application Details

    The process took 2 days - interviewed at Google in June 2010.

    Interview Details

    2 phone interviews (one with programming questions) followed by an on-site interview with 6 different folks.
    These interviews mostly consisted of problem solving (math or programming, some algorithm understanding, etc.). Lunch was good. Apparently I scored really well on the interview, but they declined to make me an offer because there were no relevant openings at that time. Then why bother interviewing me???

    Interview Questions
    • How would you analyze a video clip to determine if it was shot by an amateur or a professional?   View Answer
    • Find the optimal map route between two points on a grid (maze) with some areas blocked out.   View Answers (3)
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Difficult Interview
  11.  

    Software Development Engineer Interview

    Anonymous Interview Candidate  in  Mountain View, CA
    Anonymous Interview Candidate in Mountain View, CA
    Application Details

    I applied through a recruiter. The process took 2 weeks - interviewed at Google in March 2010.

    Interview Details

    Sent a mail to Google recruiter who was prompt to call me. After initial screening, she setup a phone screen with someone in engineering team. At the last moment, the person who was supposed to interview was not available and someone else called me.
    Questions were fairly straight forward.

    What happens when you type www.google.com in your browser?
    What are the things part of HTTP request?
    How are headers and body seperated in a HTTP request?

    Given a URL which has url-encoded name-values and a variable, return the value for it.
    Now modify the function to handle when the name appears multiple times.

    Interview Questions
    • What happens when you type www.google.com in your browser?   View Answers (2)
    • What are the things part of HTTP request?   Answer Question
    • How are headers and body seperated in a HTTP request?   Answer Question
    • Write a function for -- Given a URL which has url-encoded name-values and a variable, return the value for it.
      Now modify the function to handle when the name appears multiple times.
        Answer Question
    No Offer
    Positive Experience
    Average Interview

See What Google Employees Are Saying

 Current Software Engineer in Mountain View, CA

Pros: “good atmosphere,smart people,interesting project,excellent pay” Full Review

Worked for Google? Contribute to the Community!

The difficulty rating is the average interview difficulty rating across all interview candidates.

The interview experience is the percentage of all interview candidates that said their interview experience was positive, neutral, or negative.

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.