Brave, a browser maker, has recently purchased a search engine that prioritises users’ privacy, and it’s hoping this focus will distinguish it and help it compete with leading search giant Google.
The browser maker announced last Wednesday that it had acquired Tailcat, a search engine designed and developed by the German company Hubert Burda Media to provide users with search results without recording their activity or forming a profile based on them.
Tailcat has now been taken down, and the page that appears when you type in its URL directs users to the new Brave Search page. On this page, the search engine currently isn’t in use, but users do have the option of signing up to gain early access for beta testing. On the page, Brave has also listed the features of its new search engine, calling it private, user-first and “smarter” than “Big Tech” companies, relying on contributions from the community to improve its search.
In addition, Brave states how it will be offering a choice to users regarding ads too, providing the option to pay to be able to search without any ads, or choose a free search supported by ads. It added:
“We are working on bringing private ads to search, as we’ve done for Brave user ads.”
Further to this, the search engine is hoping to pay its searchers for viewing the ads, as is already the case with Brave’s browser, in which 70% of revenue it makes from ads is given back to users through its Brave Rewards system. According to Cnet, Brendan Eich, Brave’s Chief Executive, said about this:
“If we get to that promised land of our own automated search ad system, then we will give the user at least what we make.”
Both of these options will no doubt appeal to many searchers – either they can pay for search to see no ads, or they can effectively be paid to see ads via the reward scheme. These incentives, along with its privacy-focused ethos, could see Brave Search become a popular search engine.
However, will Brave Search present a serious threat to Google? At present, this is unlikely, with Google dominating the search engine world and accounting for over 90% of searches, according to statistics from StatCounter. In comparison, the second largest search engine at present, Bing, only counts for a mere 3% of queries.
While Brave Search has a long way to go before it can be considered a threat to Google – including going live, which is scheduled for the general public to be around spring or summer this year – it’s good to keep an eye on developments like this when you have a website. If you don’t yet have a website for your business, and you’d like to invest in one, give us a call at Engage Web and see how we can help.
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