As one of the most popular websites worldwide, there are a reported 2 million Google searches every second. With numbers like that it’s no wonder Google sets the standard for search, but could it be given a run for its money in the near future?
Earlier this month appleinsider reported Apple’s perceived strategy behind the $200 million acquisition of Topsy in 2013. Despite what appeared to be an obvious interest in the firm’s access to real time social streams, it’s clear now the company was investing in Topsy’s indexing and search expertise. Now with a new team of experienced professionals, Apple has revamped the capabilities of its Spotlight Search, a feature that was once confined to the digital bounds (files, apps, photos etc.) of the device in use. “Spotlight Suggestions” now has the ability to incorporate information from the web into search results through the use of the new in-house web crawler: Applebot. Applebot allows Apple to crawl the web and deliver relevant search results negating the use of other third party search engines which undoubtedly means trouble for competitors and long time partners like Google which for countless years, has been the default search engine for Apple devices.
As Google is heavily dependent on the revenue of search advertising, in addition to new competitors like Facebook, a transition from this once powerhouse combination to Apple’s internal search engine could mean a huge blow for the undisputed king of all things search. The loss of traffic from one of the world’s most recognised electronic brands during the mobile revolution could be devastating for Google. What’s more, with Apple’s tight restrictions on the changing of default settings it is difficult to say whether or not devices will offer users the once standard option of changing default search engines.
Taking all things into consideration, appleinsider believes there is enough supporting evidence to suggest Apple has every intention of continuing the development of capabilities and growth of Spotlight’s web-based search in a branded search engine for Apple device users. As Apple relies heavily on hardware sales like that of its most lucrative product line, the iPhone, existing in a market where hardware is quickly commoditised means a greater push towards innovative software adoption and updating hence Apple’s ramp up of built-in maps. Simply put, brands can no longer afford or benefit from the use of outside functions or platforms.