Technology Apple has been building powerful search software, could be a bargaining chip against Google


Level 44
Thread author
Top Poster
Nov 10, 2017
Bloomberg has revealed that Apple has been working on powerful search technology for its apps to essentially improve its software, hone its search skills… and use it as a bargaining chip with Google.

Google has to pay Apple a handsome figure to keep its search engine as the default on Apple products, now that Apple has its own search technology as leverage, it can squeeze greater sums of money out of Google.

According to Bloomberg, Apple is already using its new search technology (codenamed Pegasus) in some of its apps but very soon it will also be arriving on the App Store. One area Apple already couples its search technology with Google Search is in Spotlight where it has previously added the ability to point users to sites that could answer their questions.

While Apple has not launched its own search engine, it has still been very interested in the field. At the end of September, it was reported that Microsoft entered exploratory talks with Apple in 2020 to sell off its Bing search engine to the iPhone maker.

The rest


Staff Member
Jan 8, 2011
The rest
They declined to buy Bing in 2020.
According to Bloomberg, Apple did not move forward with a deal because of the money that it earns from Google and because it was concerned that Bing could not compete with Google in "quality and capabilities."
Source: Microsoft Considered Selling Bing to Apple in 2020

It's now 2023, and Bing has powerful AI-capabilities.

Apple can force iPhone to use their own search engine by default, but Apple users have been conditioned into using Google search for at least a decade, most will likely switch back to Google.
Last edited:


Level 26
Top Poster
Aug 17, 2017
Though it does not have a search service, Apple has some powerful non-web search tools, i.e. results that are not fetched from the web, but from within an app's catalog. Apple has a functional App Store Ads system in place, and you may have noticed these ads when you search for something on the App Store. Similar ads are also served in Apple News. So the company has a viable advertising group which would support an in-house web search engine if it was launched.

John Giannandrea, Apple's senior vice president of Machine Learning and AI Strategy, oversees the company's search team. It is worth noting that Giannandrea led the Artificial Intelligence team at Google, before moving to Apple. His team been developing a search engine for its apps code-named "Pegasus", and this is the technology that powers search in the company's apps including the Apple Maps, Apple TV, Apple News apps. This search technology is coming to the App store too.

Spotlight, the built-in search tool in iOS, iPadOS and macOS, has been improved over the past couple of years, most notably to include web results in the search panel. And it is quite impressive in terms of accuracy too. Surely, Google is aware of these improvements. Apple's strides towards non-web search enhancements could very well lead to the birth of a new web search rival for Google.

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