Google continues to lead the pack when it comes to U.S. search market share, according to data from Experian Hitwise. For the month of September, Google captured 66% of searches, improving by 2%, while Bing and Yahoo dipped 3% and 2% respectively. Hitwise also analyzed 66 other search engines, which only grabbed 5.8% of U.S. searches as a whole.
The technology that people have used to search hasn’t changed a whole lot, but how long will it be until we see a search evolution that will change the way we search on the Web?
That evolution is much closer than we think. With the recent launch of iOS 5, Apple has created the launch pad for Siri, an artificially intelligent voice search assistant that purposely works around Google to serve results. Google is winning the search game, but Apple is going to change it.
Social Data Makes Search More Relevant
It’s not a surprise that Google is dominating the U.S. search market. They’re responsible for close to two thirds of search queries, while any Bing-powered searches, not just Bing.com, come in at just over a quarter.
The boundaries of search are changing. When considering search relevance, social signals are becoming an increasingly important part of the algorithm, and Bing struck a deal with Facebook for search integration before Google did.
Google did have an agreement with Twitter for real-time search data, however that expired earlier this year and Google has taken social data into its own hands by incorporating the +1 button and Google+ into its search results. Creating an in house solution is a great start, but Google clearly doesn’t have near the amount of social data that Facebook’s hundreds of millions of users bring to Bing’s table.
In the meantime, Apple has a state of the art cruise missile coming in for the kill. The targets: Google and Microsoft. With the launch of iOS 5 and the massive record-breaking demand for their iPhone 4S, Apple will launch Siri, an artificial intelligence system that is able to understand human language much better than Google’s search box can. As a last resort, if Siri can’t get an answer for you, she (yes, it’s a her) will search Google, but only if she’s tried all of Google’s competitors first. We’re in love.
For local searches, such as stores and restaurants, Siri will use Yelp to get you the information you need. Have a math problem? Siri will use Wolfram Alpha. Every query done through Siri is a query that Google didn’t get. With the new iOS 5, Twitter has been integrated and will provide data for real-time social search in a galaxy far, far away from Google. Apple can easily integrate many different services apart from anything Google can provide, and iPhone and future tablet users will be using traditional search less and less.
What are your thoughts? Is Siri the future of how we’ll search the Web?