Baidu, the Chinese search engine equivalent of Google, is taking aim at their US competitor by directly targeting Google with a new mobile search application that, according to multiple published reports, will begin turning up pre-installed on mobile phones.
For now, Baidu will only say that the much-hyped search will start shipping “sometime in 2010.”
If you’re wondering which mobile devices will carry the app, your guess is as good as anyone’s. Baidu is still ironing out details with yet-to-be named device manufacturers. But no matter the mobile phone maker, its a good get for the handsets that ultimately snag the ap. Baidu, which accounts for approximately 70% of all online searches in China, dwarfs Google, which only nets about 20%.
Apart from the standard search functionality, Baidu will reportedly also connect mobile users to Baidu’s message board and to the various other digital offerings either presently in existence or now in the works.
Only a few weeks ago, Baidu unveiled an agreement with China Unicom to similarly preloading a host of Baidu’s search engine-related services on China Unicom’s 3G mobile phones.
In case you are unaware, search engines are big business in China, where the population performed more than 270 million online searches in only the second quarter of 2009.