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yahoo goes after google (finally)

Well, well. Finally, a year after purchasing Inktomi, and six months after buying Overture it seems that Yahoo has finally digested both acquisitions and is ready to move on from using Google for its searches and begin growing on its own in the area. The Wall Street Journal reports today (subscription required) that Yahoo is now widely expected to dump Google "within a few months". Quote:

Some marketing firms, which help advertisers manage their online campaigns for search-related ads, say they have been told Yahoo will switch from Google to its own technology as early as the first quarter.
Now, I suppose we all expected that to happen at some point (I for one am surprised it didn't happen sooner) but there's more meat to it, including mentions of Yahoo preparing to leverage its various web properties in making search a more personalized affair. Quote:
Yahoo isn't discussing many of its search plans in detail. But some steps toward independence can already be seen on the shopping section of Yahoo's site, which is now using Inktomi's technology. Type in "digital camera," for example, and the site shows pictures of specific cameras along with their prices, flanked by "shopping tools" that allow users to quickly call up price comparisons, fuller specifications and user reviews. By contrast, the same search on Yahoo's front page, which still uses Google's technology, returns a familiar text-based list of links, starting with those sponsored by retailers and followed by other camera-related sites ranked by popularity.

In the future, Yahoo officials say, searches could become much more personalized. They could be tailored to return results that reflect users' past Web-surfing behavior, for example, or preferences or interests they list in a profile.

With Google now expected to go public sometime before mid-year, things are surely going to get interesting in the search space. AOL might have to do something too to keep up with the other portals (ie., MSN and Yahoo), especially as dial-up erodes as a market advantage over time. AOL-Google anyone?

Categories: technology
Posted by diego on January 6 2004 at 1:50 PM

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