In a perhaps surprising move, the Cupertino company has reportedly begun ramping up efforts to launch its own search engine tech to rival that of Google’s, a course of action that could change the face of search.
SEARCH HISTORY: THE APPLE AND GOOGLE DEAL
For a number of years, consumers have been complaining that Siri just doesn’t come close to rival smart assistants like Google Assistant and Amazon Echo, and it’s clear to see why. It might be true that Apple spearheaded the smart speaker and assistant market when Siri was added to iPhones back in 2011, but the truth is that the company has failed to invest enough to build an assistant for the future. HomePod explains it; Apple has since introduced a new low-cost $99 HomePod mini, but the original device struggled to find a place in the market, mostly because Siri doesn’t offer the computational power or search performance as its rivals. The company insists that it’s investing billions of dollars into Siri every year, and it does innovate from time-to-time with new features, but nobody can deny Apple took its foot off the gas when it comes to search, and it’s now paying an expensive game of catch-up.
Apple, too, understood its failings with Siri, thus signing an exclusive agreement with Google to make it the default search engine on iOS devices. In the UK alone, Google pays Apple $1.5 billion per year to be installed as the default search option on iPhones, iPads, and other Apple devices, thus locking users into the Google ecosystem, and allowing Google to capture valuable search data. Though Apple’s never disclosed a figure for its Google partnership, analysts predict it earns $9 billion per year from placement deals like the one it has with Google. After all, there are more than two billion iOS devices in use around the world, and on top of Google’s default browser status with Android, it makes sense for the Alphabet-owned giant to pay for the same treatment on a rival OS.
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