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Google Won’t Dominate Mobile Search The Same Way As Online Search

mobile-search-continues-trending-toward-all-things-local-300×224.jpgGoogle is clearly the dominant player in online search, and although they already have a strong position in mobile search, it remains unclear if they will be able to replicate their level of domination in the long term in the mobile market.

A recent report published by Pyramid Research examines how differences in consumers’ usage of mobile devices as well as emerging new technologies may well open the door for new competitors to develop a strong presence in the mobile search market.


The report also provides an overview of the mobile search industry and looks at its position within the digital advertising, mobile communications and search markets in general.

Key findings from the report include:

  • The mobile search market was worth $901 million in 2010, which represents around 3% of the total search market. Mobile search is expected to reach about 11% of the total search market by 2015 for a total revenue of around $8 billion.
  • Mobile search represents around a quarter of total mobile advertising revenue today and should exceed 40% by 2015.
  • The increase in sales of smartphones is a key driver in the market – Pyramid suggests that by 2015 up to 97% of all search revenue will come from smartphone users.
  • The list of likely competitors in the market is quite diverse, and would include:
    • handset manufacturers who have the ability to pre-load apps onto handsets,
    • mobile operators who also can pre-load apps onto handsets plus have access to location information,
    • existing local advertising specialists such as Yellow Pages,
    • Social Networks, and
    • vertical aggregators who specialize in a particular sector such as an ATM finder or a restaurant finder.

The report is entitled “Growth of Voice & Local Search Challenge Google’s Dominance”, and so clearly two of the key trends that it examines in detail are how the combination of mobile search with location or voice will affect the industry.

Regarding the use of voice recognition, Pyramid suggests that voice will become an increasingly important driver of mobile search. And specfically, local language voice search may provide an opportunity for local companies to benefit from first mover advantage in order to take on the “Big Boys” of online search.

In terms of the use of location and mobile search, Pyramid analyst Jan ten Sythoff said, “The combination of mobile and location is a powerful one, and is particularly relevant for search. It is an effective way for users to find places of interest, products and services nearby, thus offering a rich opportunity for advertising.”

He goes on to say: “As a result, there is much interest in taking a share of local advertising spending, which is dominated by business listings, directories such as Yellow Pages and print. Competition is intensifying as companies from different industries are drawn into it”

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