TikTok Owner ByteDance Launches Own Search Engine 'Toutiao Search'

Posted: Aug 12 2019, 7:05am CDT | by , Updated: Aug 13 2019, 6:02pm CDT , in Technology News


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TikTok owner ByteDance launches own search engine 'Toutiao Search'
Photo by ByteDance

ByteDance's Baidu challenger goes live.

As expected, ByteDance, the maker of the hit short-video streaming app TikTok, has officially launched its own search engine that it co-developed with talents from Google, Microsoft’s Bing and ByteDance’s new rival, Baidu.

The new search engine, called Toutiao Search, is only available in China at the moment and is sitting within the company’s flagship product, Chinese news aggregator Jinri Toutiao, Reuters reported.

The news comes over a week after I4U News reported about ByteDance's move to create its own search engine and a music streaming app that could challenge Spotify. Reuters also reported at the time that ByteDance is also looking to foray into the smartphone space following a deal with China's Smartisan Digital.

The latest report did not confirm whether ByteDance plans to roll out the search engine to overseas markets, such as those where the company’s TikTok video app is available.

TikTok, which is available for iOS and Android, currently leads the short video platform in other parts of the world, including in the rest of Asia and the United States after merging with its rival Musical.ly in late 2017. ByteDance subsequently merged TikTok and Musical.ly in August 2018 following the merger.

Meanwhile, according to Reuters, Toutiao Search offers censored results like other Chinese search engines. The news outlet said a search for “June Fourth” — which refers to the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests — showed results from the People’s Daily and other official news websites.

Toutiao Search is up against Baidu in their home market after Google exited China in 2010 following its resistance to filtering its search results, as required by the government.

Citing market researcher StatCounter, Reuters said Baidu accounted for 66% of desktop searches and 71% of mobile searches in China.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/76" rel="author">Jitender Rathi</a>
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