Google might be the king of search (quite possibly the Internet) in America, but in Russia, it is a completely different story. The Russian search engine Yandex is the fifth largest search engine in the world, and serves as the primary engine for Russian speaking nations. Searches using Yandex account for around sixty percent of all searches in Russia.
While in terms of search, Google may not be as big in Russia, but they are still present. Yandex of course recognizes Google’s power, and are now putting in extra effort to compete. What is the best way to do this? There are a number of processes, but Yandex has launched an internet browser in response. Obviously, the competition ground will only be Russia and Russian speaking countries.
According to Bloomberg Businessweek, the largest internet browser in Russia is currently Opera, which accounts for thirty percent of the nation’s market share. Despite this internationally unfamiliar name, American browsers such as Mozilla Firefox and Apple’s Safari are also present in Russia.
Though Google wasn’t the biggest name in Russian internet usage, the people at Yandex had explained that Google was instigating on a push to break more into the market. That was the impetus of the Yandex browser to be created – a sort of defense mechanism to keep Google out, or in the least controlled.
The Yandex internet browser is a cloud-based one, and the Economic Times states that the basis is a WebKit platform, and ironically enough, also utilized Chromium code by none other than Google.
There are also many other parallels that can be drawn when Yandex is compared to Chrome. As would be expected by any search engine company that makes a browser, the search tool and browsing is very much integrated into one another. Yandex doesn’t seem so concerned if users stray away from the search engine, since there is an option that allows users to go from engine to engine. But much like Chrome, there are many other tools that are already part of the browser that will keep the loyalty to where Yandex would like it.
The browser itself admittedly isn’t much to look at, based off of some screen shots that sources have made available. Yandex was clearly going for a more minimalist interface, and perhaps focusing more on what the browser can actually do. However, Yandex also has another trick up its sleeve to compete in another market – apps.
Along with the internet browser, Yandex also announced that they would be start up an Android App store that will feature about 40,000 apps. This quick availability of an extensive number of apps is thanks to a collaboration with the Opera Mobile Store. This app store is not available just yet, but will be at the end of October. Some screenshots shown on sources reveal a pretty fresh looking store, much more aesthetic than the browser.
It’s no small feat to go against Google (or defend, that is), but Yandex seems to be gearing up with a lot on their shoulders. The results how users react will take a while, especially since the store hasn’t been made available yet, but shows to be promising for the Russian company.