Google is adding private, decentralized search engine Presearch as a default option on all new and factory-reset Android devices in the U.K. and Europe.
Nearly 70% of smartphone owners in Europe use the Android operating system, which means there’s strong potential for this fledgling search engine to grow its user base.
Presearch has 2.2 million registered users and averages 1.3 million searches per day.
That’s obviously not comparable to Google, but it’s fair to compare Presearch to privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo.
At 1.3 million searches per day, Presearch is roughly on par with DuckDuckGo’s search volume in 2012 after 3 years in business.
Given that Presearch was founded in 2017, its current search volume is respectable for the niche it’s targeting. Since January 2021 its search volume has grown 300%.
To give you an idea of what the market for privacy-focused search engines is like at the moment, DuckDuckGo is currently averaging 94 million searches per day.
The interest is there and it’s growing year-over-year. Last year, for example, DuckDuckGo was averaging 65 million searches per day.
There’s no guarantee Presearch will see similar success, but it’s now a search engine that’s worth keeping an eye on.
Why is Google Adding More Default Search Options?
Earlier this year Google announced it would be increasing the number of default search options on Android in an effort to appease the European Commission.
Google faces significantly more scrutiny in Europe and the UK than it does in North America. In 2018 the European Commission fined Google over 4 billion euro, alleging it was using Android to gain an unfair advantage in the search market.
At first Google required search engines to pay to be included as a default option, but has since removed that requirement.
As a result of these changes, the 5 most popular eligible search engines in each European Union country will now be displayed in random order at the top of the Android choice screen.
An additional seven search engines are included below the top 5. This means that Presearch may appear differently on the choice page of an Android device depending on where a user lives.
Regardless of location or device, anyone can use Presearch on their desktop or smartphone via Google Play or the App Store.
Statement From Presearch
Colin Pape, Founder of Presearch, states in an announcement:
“With Android running on about four-fifths of the world’s smartphones including hundreds of millions in Europe, we see this as a huge win in taking decentralized services and blockchain mainstream and driving mass adoption.
With potentially hundreds of millions of users just a click away on the Search Choice screen, this is one of the biggest wins for any project within the crypto space and a huge opportunity to gain exposure for Presearch’s private, decentralized search experience.”
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