Baidu vs. Google: Battling for the future of search

Baidu vs. Google: Battling for the future of search

I wonder if Google executives worry day and night about the company’s future these days. First, there is Apple-world’s most valuable company separating itself from Google even at the risk of taking flak from its consumers and critics (no Google maps on iPhone5). Second, there is the fact that the largest and fastest growing mobile market in the world-China, prefers not Google but its rival Baidu when it comes to search. Search is the bread and butter of Google and with that under threat, Google may soon be joining the list of tech equivalent of endangered species.

Started in 2000, Baidu claims to be the most advanced Chinese-language search engine. Baidu is far ahead of Google in search in China, controlling 83.6 percent of all searches vs. Google’s 11.1 percent. “Semantic search”, which Google has recently started to work on, was adopted by Baidu as far back as 2003. This search giant is now focusing on the southeast Asian markets leveraging their language resources. A couple points that give Baidu the edge over Google are: 1. Baidu gives consumers results for downloading free mp3s-a popular activity in China and 2. It also give results for apps. E.g., If you typed angry birds in Baidu, it’ll give you a direct result to download the app with one click.

While Google backed out of China protesting against its censorship policies a few years back, Baidu has molded itself according to the laws of the land and Chinese people don’t seem to care as long as it serves their search needs. They also don’t seem to mind the fact that Baidu prominently displays paid search results ahead of organic search results.

It’ll be important to remember that both search giants, not only compete against each other, but they now compete with social networking sites like Facebook, which are essentially walled gardens that do not let either Baidu or Google search their data.

What we are seeing, is the changing face of search.That warrants an entire blog post.

Read original blog at Blog


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