The bold browser replaced Google with its own search engine
Brave, the privacy-focused browser that blocks third-party ads and trackers by default, will switch to using its own search engine by default, the company announced. The change will be applied for new users, and will affect which search engine is used via the browser’s address bar. Brave Search will replace Google in the United States, United Kingdom, and Canada, Qwant in France, and DuckDuckGo in Germany. More countries will be transferred in the coming months.
This is a significant step for Brave’s new search engine, which launched into public beta earlier this year, as most people only take what is given to them. The search engine set as the browser default is an important promotional tactic, and it is very important that the practice has become a significant focus of antitrust review. In Europe, Google is now offering a choice of search engines for Android users after it was fined $ 5 billion by EU regulators for, among other things, illegally tying search to Google on Android. Over the years, Google has also paid companies like Apple and Firefox to be the default search engine in their browsers.
“As we know from experience with many browsers, the default setting is essential for adoption, and Brave Search has reached the quality and critical mass needed to be our default search option, and will offer our users a seamless privacy-by-default online experience, “Brave co-founder and CEO Brendan Eich said in a statement. He added that its search engine now manages” virtually 80 million queries per month. “
Although the change will boost Brave Search’s popularity among Brave users, the browser’s markethare is so small that it doesn’t register against established competitors like Chrome, Safari, Edge, and Opera, according to data from StatCounter . However, as of September 2021, Brave said its browser had nearly 40 million monthly active users.
As well as boosting the popularity of Brave’s search engine, the move is a sign of its confidence in the new privacy -focused service. Brave Search is notable for building Brave’s own independent web index, while many competitors rely on a mix of results from larger indexes like Microsoft’s Bing (though Brave says it will take of results from other providers where it cannot produce enough of its own). The company said its search engine does not track “users, their searches, or their clicks.”
Along with the change to the default search engine, Brave is also launching a new opt-in system for users to contribute their data and help improve search results. Its Web Discovery Project claims to boldly collect search and browsing data in a way that is not linked to individual users, and that it cannot be sold to advertisers or given to authorities.
Brave Search is currently freely available and does not show any ads, but the company said it plans to roll out ads in its free version in the future, as well as launch an ad -free premium service.
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