Or it might be teaching them. How many Google Web Search users are aware that they might find what they're looking for more easily with Google News, Google Images, Google Products, Google Patents, etc.? Giving them a taste of results from other channels may help to broaden their search habits.
In any case, I think we're talking about two different topics in this thread:
1) Google Universal Search, which is the aggregation of search results from different Google search tools on a single SERP;
2) Whether Google is classifying types of sites or pages within its search index and Web Search algorithm (e.g., as editorial or reference pages, e-commerce pages, affiliate pages, forum pages, etc.).
The first topic has been discussed here before (at length); the second topic has been discussed in a more speculative "what if" or "maybe someday" context, and the premise of this thread seems to be that "someday" may be arriving at long last.