Beginning Sept. 1, decentralized search engine Presearch will be listed as a default option on all new and factory-reset devices sold in the United Kingdom and Europe, a move that could erode Google’s dominance in the search engine market.
The decision by Google to list Presearch as a default browser option follows a protracted legal battle with the European Commission over accusations that the technology company used Android to solidify its search engine dominance. In 2018, the European Commission’s antitrust regulator fined Google a record 4.24 billion euros for unfairly limiting competition on smartphone operating systems. In 2019, Google said it will allow search engine rivals to compete for free on Android devices.
Presearch’s private, decentralized search engine option will now be listed on Android devices alongside several other eligible search engines across Europe. Although the search engines will be listed randomly, Presearch may appear differently depending on the user’s location. Regardless of location or device, Presearch can be accessed on desktop or smartphone by downloading the app via Google Play or the App Store.
Presearch processes more than 1 million searches per day across more than 2.3 million registered users. The company said daily searches have increased more than 300% since January 2021. All search engine requests are processed by Presearch node operators, who earn rewards through Ethereum-based PRE tokens.
PRE tokens are listed on CoinMarketCap and currently trade for less than 5 cents. The project has a total market capitalization of nearly $17 million.
Although Google remains the de facto leader in the global search engine market, several competitors have attempted to erode its dominance. Brave, a crypto-powered web browser, recently launched a new privacy-protecting beta search engine to provide users with an alternative to Google’s personal data harvesting.