Apple is currently in the process of developing its own search engine that no longer has to be dependent on Google, reports the Financial Times. A project that would not be new, but which would be speeded up considerably due to the recent legal proceedings by the American government against the giant Mountain View.
The lawsuit against Google motivates Apple to gain independence
It’s no longer a secret: For several years now, Google has been paying Apple between $ 8 billion and $ 12 billion a year to install its search engine on Safari by default. An agreement that raises important antitrust issues as it prevents the development of similar competing services. To such an extent, it will also be at the center of the United States’ lawsuit against the Mountain View giant and therefore it risks being invalidated by the judiciary. It is therefore more urgent than ever for Apple to guarantee its independence and to draw up a plan B.
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iOS 14 indicates the beginnings of an Apple-specific search engine
According to information from the Financial Times, not only would this plan B have been found, but it is also currently in the full phase of accelerated development: It is an Apple-specific search engine. The last update to iOS 14 already found some signs of this new service, especially with the introduction of a search function directly managed by the Apple brand.
It’s in the search window, which you can access by sliding your finger to the right from an iPhone’s home page. The suggestions displayed there, as well as the suggestions for automatic completion, are generated entirely by Apple without using Google’s service. The BDM also advises that your “iPhone can automatically redirect you (…) to a website when you make a request from the home screen without using Google technologies”.
Applebot accelerates its activity
Also, keep in mind that Apple has a web crawler that indexes the pages available on the internet so users can find them by their needs. This is the Applebot that is currently mainly used for inquiries to Siri.
By developing on a larger scale, the Apple brand could very well use it as a basis for building its own search engine, and that’s exactly what seems to be happening. In an interview with the Financial Times, marketers admitted that Applebot activity has increased. In addition, the Cupertino company recently expanded its job openings to find engineers who are experts in this field. Also note that John Giannandrea joined Apple in 2018 after serving the interests of the Google search engine for eight years. A big plus for Tim Cook’s company.
If Apple has not yet officially announced its plans to develop its own search engine, all these hints leave little room for doubt. Obviously, for Google, this is an added blow that may be hard to take.