When you think about mobile search engine, what would come to mind?
Siri, Cortana, or Google voice?
In China, the answer is Wechat.
With Google missing in the market, Wechat could take the market simply by adding the search function to their mobil-focused, million-active-user app.
Wechat testing in-app search function
Since last week, some iphone users are able tosee results from major websites from Tencent News, SOHU, FT.com etc, when they try to search for keywords on Wechat. When click on the results, it directs to external websites. Normally, the search results only includes: Moment, public accounts, contacts, and other Wechat features.
The function is apparently still in testing, but hopefully it won’t take long before the search engine can provide rich search content.
The mobile search engine market is open for grab for Wechat
Baidu occupies 80% of the market share in China, together with other small search engines, serves 593 million internet users. While according to Wechat, the MAU is 889 million in 2016, with 50% of the users use Wechat for more than 90mins everyday.
889 million is more than the entire population in Europe. also more than the number of mobile search user (524 million), which is reported by CNNIC in 2016.
What really makes Wechat winning at the mobile search engine game, is the content generated from 20 million public account. As it up till now, content on Wechat public accounts are not open for search engines, except Sogou.com. Total control of the gigantic content gives Wechat the competitive advantage that no other search engine could dream of.