Google's iPhone Search Traffic as Great as 97%

 
 
By Clint Boulton  |  Posted 2010-10-19
 
 
 

Despite the enthusiasm around Microsoft Bing's tighter integration with Facebook, Google hogs as much as 97 percent of all the search traffic on Apple's iPhone, according to ad network Chitika.

Apple's mobile Safari toolbar sends 49 percent of traffic to Google, while the Google homepage racks up about 42.24 percent of the traffic on the iPhone. The Google App accounts for 8.68 percent of Google's iPhone traffic. 

Chitika analyst Dan Ruby said that, counting the Google App and Safari to be different sources, Google controls the top two iPhone search engine spots on the popular mobile device.

Google's lofty placement and market share comes courtesy of a combination of Google's contract with Apple to be the default search engine on the device with its position as the dominant search engine in the United States.

With the launch of the iPhone 4 in June, Apple began offering users the option to switch to Yahoo or Bing, but it's clear few users have strayed from Google.

Yahoo's search share on the iPhone is 2.25 percent, while Bing's is .58 percent, counting Bing searches through its app, its home page and Safari tool bar.

However, Ruby offered the caveat that the native Bing app on the iPhone does not send a referral URL, making it difficult to gauge its impact on Bing's phone traffic. Ruby said the actual number for Bing is likely between 1 percent and 4 percent.

This data proves more poignant when one considers that Google claimed its mobile ad business, which is largely powered by searches done on Google through Android, iPhone and other mobile handsets, is operating at an annual run-rate of $1 billion.

Moreover, Google Senior Vice President of Product Management Jonathan Rosenberg said on the company's third quarter earnings call that the number is growing as the company moves to launch Google Instant on mobile devices.

How much of this can be attributed to Google's prime placement on the iPhone? It's tough to say, though it is believed Google is paying hundreds of millions to reign on the handset.

What's also interesting about this is there were whispers, now clearly ill-founded, that Bing was set to replace Google as the default search engine on the iPhone.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs doused this idea in June, and Google seems to have only increased its lead in mobile search on the device.

If Google reaps 97 percent of search traffic from the iPhone, the percentage must be similar, if not higher, on Android phones, which spotlight Google software.

 
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