Ripples are spreading across the search and browser world this week and some surprising players are at the center. For the first time in quite a while, Yahoo is making news for their tech rather than their company turmoil. With the release of Axis, a new search app and add-on for both iOS and desktop browsers, Yahoo aims to make browsing the Web a more visual and convenient experience. Both press and user response have been mixed however, with no small part of that likely due to the huge security hole exposed by blogger Nik Cubrilovic.

Surprisingly, the app is finding early adopters among the iOS crowd, all the more interesting given that iOS Axis is essentially a skin over top of Safari. Despite this, the skin is filled with features you won’t find on Apple’s browser, such as easy toggling between regular and image searches, and instant syncing of bookmarks and tabs between desktop, iPhone and iPad. Though the main push for Axis is visual browsing, the most powerful feature of Axis may be the near-flawless device syncing across iDevices and desktop.

In all, though, the Axis experience on iOS is compelling, which is in contrast to the underwhelming desktop integration; Axis ends up being not much more than an impressive syncing tool. Regaled to a small search box on the bottom of your browser, Axis is more of an unwanted intruder with abilities that don’t provide more functionality any other host of exiting add-ons. It’s also more limited than the iOS version to boot.

Axis is a worthy experiment however and, at the very least, may influence the future of search for big players like Google. Whether Axis will gain any sort of large traction is yet to be seen. Whispers among the web rumor mill indicate another company that may try to break into the browser market however, and they already have the user issue figured out.

A Friday Pocket-lint report cites a “trusted source” that Facebook wants to buy Opera Software — manufacturers of the Opera web browser, which claims more than 200 million users worldwide. The Facebook browser would include default menu bar plugins, further permeating Facebook into users’ general web experience, according to the report.

A custom browser would be a significant step toward Facebook becoming your web, as opposed to just an Internet site you visit and service you use. Opera’s mobile browser has received strong reviews online, meaning a functional Facebook browser using it could be even more powerful. Facebook has struggled to penetrate mobile use as deeply as many think it should be able to — and will need to in order to sustain long-term growth.

There’s no telling yet if the Opera/Facebook rumors are true, but there would be no dearth of irony in seeing Facebook try to battle Google for browser dominance as Google+ struggles to play catchup in social networking. The only thing we can count on is change and innovation, and certainly some interesting skirmishes ahead.

Microsoft rolled out a new version of its Bing search engine with new features aimed at weaving together the experience of Internet search and social networking.


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Every search engine wants to be more relevant. However, what is relevant to you might not be relevant to someone else.


/*The basic goal of SEO is to make your site more appealing to the search engines. The more appealing you are to the search engines, the better you will rank in their results pages. The better your rank, the more traffic you should see. The more traffic you get, the higher your conversion rate will [...]

Google is facing new privacy violation charges in Belgium regarding data collection which occurred by Google Street View vehicles that roamed the world gathering GPS locations and taking photos.

For the past several years, a variety of start-up companies have been working, mostly unnoticed, to bring real-time local product inventory data to the internet. In November of 2010, Google joined that effort with local product search.

Google has always had a work hard/play hard mentality (have you SEEN their offices?!) and on perhaps no other day of the year is this more apparent than April 1st.

One of the long-standing dilemmas any search engine has to grapple with is how to rate their own products in search results. Various rumors have been circulating that a particular engine or another is playing favorites by giving a search ranking boost to their own products. Ben Edelman, an assistant professor at the Harvard Business School and search engine “bird-watcher” of sorts aims to shed some light on these rumors via his recently-published study.

You could say Bing is taking a cue from its competition, but it seems to be more literally taking search results as well. Google Fellow Amit Singhal is claiming so much and has provided some amusing (if not totally clever) results from its “Bing Sting.”

© 2011