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Newsweek takes a look at the dominant search engine in a variety of countries this week. What I see is that Google is winning in some locations and not in others. Many countries are looking at developing their own search engines and lessening their reliance on those from the U.S. Russian search engine Yandex CEO Arkady Volozh says, "In China, Japan, North Korea, locals are still beating Google."
Akiko Kashiwagi notes that Yahoo leads, Google is second and local engines Goo and BiGlobe are trailing and this has caused Japan to look at creating their own search technology. She notes, "This situation has apparently triggered many urgent meetings at Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, which last April launched a three-year campaign to rectify it by developing Japan’s own search technology. Loosely translated as the Great Voyage Information Project, the campaign reflects the ministry’s belief that a handful of Japanese companies and universities are sitting on technology with whiz-bang potential—if only they would join forces to release it."
It appears that this project is bringing together a variety of Japanese companies on the consortium.
Naver is the leading Web portal including search in South Korea, B.J. Lee reports. Comscore reports that Naver is the world’s fifth largest portal in terms of search-engine queries. B.J discusses just how large Naver is in Korea, "The expertise comes from Naver’s 28 million users. Since 2002, when the portal launched its knowledge-search service, it has collected a database of 70 million questions and answers, which it draws upon whenever a new query comes along. The early start has allowed Naver to grab 75 percent of South Korea’s portal market. More than half of Korea’s 48 million people have logged on. They make 100 million queries each day." Google has less than 2% of the Korean Market. Naver uses human editors to enhance the search results by pushing South Korean results first.
Yandex is the market leader by focusing on the needs of the local market. Yandex occupies 70% of the contextual ads market in Russia. Owen Matthews and Anna Nemtsova note, "Although Google has had an office in Moscow since 2005, it only gets about 15 percent of Russian searches—while the homegrown Yandex search engine gets 55 percent, followed by another Russian company, Rambler, with 17 percent."