ByteDance to Enter the Search Engine Business
COVID-19 and China
Searching on a phone. Image Credits: Philbert Pembani/Pexels

Baidu being by far the most favorite search engine in China since google left the country back in 2010, is about to face a challenge as ByteDance which is the worlds most valued start-up announces to establish its very own search engine. This move is a part of the company’s plan to expand out of the short video apps and content services. Baidu has already been facing consumer criticism due to promoting low quality content, ByteDance could have an edge, although it is still just an announcement. 

“From 0 to 1, we are building a general search engine for a more ideal user experience,” according to the company’s post on the WeChat messaging service.

The search engine will be embedded within the company’s apps, which will be very convenient for the users to search for related information or products. The company will be able to make profit from search and advertisements.

On the other hand Baidu being its only competitor has been slammed for various moves such as posting false hospital information. The company reported a loss of CNY 327 million in the first quarter.

Jinri Toutiao (今日头条) ByteDances content platform will be one of the first apps to feature the search engine. Later it is also expected to become available on the company’s all famous app TikTok locally known as douyin.

Business times reported that the company is well known for its aggressive recruitment of top tech talents from other companies. The company is apparently applying the same strategy for its planned search engine project. ByteDance reportedly already recruited a number of new employees, most of whom were former employees from Google, Baidu, and Microsoft's Bing search engine.

Apart from creating its own search engine, ByteDance recently confirmed plans of developing its own smartphone. The company said it has been working on developing a smartphone with the help of device maker Smartisan Technologies. Bytedance acquired a number the company’s patents for an undisclosed amount, while it was already working on a smartphone for over six months.


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