According to various news reports citing Sina Technology News as the source, Apple might make Baidu the default search engine for all Apple devices that use its mobile operating system, or iOS, in China. Google (GOOG) is currently the default iOS search engine for Apple’s mobile products in the Chinese market. Baidu officials were unavailable to comment on the unconfirmed report. But, ThinkEquity analyst Henry Guo says it’s “highly likely” Baidu will become the default search engine on Apple’s Chinese version iOS as soon as next month.
Such a move by Apple would shore up Baidu’s dominant position in China, where it holds a roughly 80% share of the search engine market. During the three months ended Dec. 31, it was the largest website in China as measured by user traffic, according to a company filing with the SEC.
Good for Baidu, good for Apple, bad for Google.
This in addition to Baidu signing an agreement with Facebook last year to create a social media website in China, it looks like they’re poised for big things this year.