In April of this year, Yahoo re-negotiated its deal with Microsoft with regards to powering search. Microsoft’s Bing and Yahoo had a 10-year partnership, where Yahoo was to power all desktop search results and ads via Bing but was free to use alternatives on mobile devices. Under the terms of the new contract, only 51 percent of Yahoo’s search results are required to be powered by Bing. The other 49 percent are open Yahoo’s Gemini system or alternatives. Yahoo seems to have actioned that clause and is now testing using Google’s search for both search results and search ads.
If the trial run is successful, the two companies will likely sign a larger search deal according to Bloomberg. Interestingly, In 2008, the two companies were blocked by a US court from signing a deal, in which Google was to provide the search ads for Yahoo’s search. The trial test is being run on both desktop and mobile search results. In acknowledging the tests, Yahoo said the tests such as this one with Google are aimed at creating the best experiences for its users.
Yahoo has been keen on having its Yahoo search engine bundled into third-party products, like Mozilla’s Firefox web browser and Oracle’s Java software. A relationship between the two would definitely come under sharp scrutiny as happened in 2008. Google is the dominant player in search results and search ads fueling fears that it may abuse its dominant position. Google search leads with 70% market share followed by Microsoft’s Bing with 9.8%, Yahoo search follows with 9.5%.