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80% of Chinese Android Devices will Have Baidu as Default Search Engine; Squeezing Google Out of China

Yueguo Feng, general manager of Baidu’s wireless business unit, announced the company’s plans to further edge Google out of China by bringing Baidu search to Google-powered Android devices. “Feng said that 80% of the Android smartphones that will be sold in China will have Baidu as its default search engine, according to a report from TechWeb. This will further boost Baidu’s uncontested dominance in the country, holding about 75% of the search market. The details given regarding the initiative were sparse and the timeline of implementation wasn’t revealed,” reports The Next Web.

Baidu CEO Robin Li already announced last year that the company is under negotiations with a number of Android handset makers to pre-install the Baidu search box application to Android smartphones distributed in China. Li has a vision of brining the Baidu search box on every Chinese’ phone screen.

If the company is successful and lives up to its prediction, Google will be marginalized in the world’s biggest internet and mobile markets. This will undoubtedly aggravate Google’s position in the country, which has been on a downward slump this year. Last year, Google fell to 19.6% in the fourth quarter from 21.6% in the previous.

China has almost 900 million mobile users, about three times the entire US population.

Android was to be a way that Google could regain momentum after being all but pushed out of the PC search market by Chinese government favoritism of Baidu and hacking.

Despite losing the search game in China, Google is winning when it comes to its open-source mobile operating system, but this openness is also the exact same reason why Baidu is able to load its search application to the OS. By December 2010, around 50% of smartphones in China were running on Android, up from zero in 2009.

[Via: The Next Web]

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