Google has started to open up it's Analytics service once again. As of right now, there are 236,780 accounts -- up 2055 from when they stopped accepting sign-ups. I think they are probably sending out invitations to the people who put their name on the list.
The data Google is collecting is as valuable for users as it is for themselves, which is why it is given away for free. Google can determine many things that were previously unknown such as specific details about average length of time spent on a site, average pages per visit, the popularity of content compared to other content on the same site, the relevance of a page based on incoming traffic statisitcs from specific keywords, etc. -- and it can be incorporated into their algorithm to provide even more relevant search results.
SEO will continue to change drastically in the months and years to come. To get top placement on search results, webmasters will actually need good content to satisfy the new things Google can track. This will be determined by the way its visitors interact with the Web site (ie. how many pages they visit, how they get to the site, which keywords generate the best results, bounce rates, etc.) in addition to the current calculation based on content and backlinks.
Do you think Google will incorporate this information into their algorithm?