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Firefox – Yahoo! is the default search engine in the United States

Anyone using the browser of the Mozilla Foundation know, when you start Firefox, the home page displays immediately a Google search box, not to mention more research later that take place directly via the search engine from Mountain View. Unless of course you have taken the trouble to go to change it, which is perfectly normal since Google and Mozilla have an agreement, the Mountain View search engine is used by default. Mozilla does not hesitate to question some of these partnerships and this time, it is precisely the one with Google.

Thus, last week, we read everywhere that Mozilla decided to change the default search engine and Google would be replaced with Yahoo! and this for 5 years. If there is indeed a perfectly accurate, it still deserves some clarification. Indeed, Yahoo! will become the default search engine, but only in the United States. Yes, you read right, Google is still the Firefox default search engine in Europe … well for now.

One may well say that it would have been easier to make Yahoo as the default search engine worldwide. Well actually no, and you can imagine that behind all this, it is always about money and if Mozilla has chosen to take Yahoo! to the United States, it is primarily a strategic decision, we finally hope. Indeed, in the land of Uncle Sam, Mountain View search engine homeland, Google market share is much smaller than in Europe because there, they are 67.5%, while in Europe, they can reach up to 96%, which is an important source of income. Besides, you should know that in 2012, 90% of revenues came from the Mozilla Foundation sponsored links from Google, which represents all 274 million of the $ 311 million.

Which is still quite strange still in this “strategic” decision is that Yahoo! with only 10% market share in the US over the same period, so the Mozilla strategy can easily be questionable. Meanwhile, in the background, having 90% of its revenue through Google alone can present a real danger to term the Foundation for when Google cut valves … I let you imagine the rest.

In short, make the decision to diversify its sources of income is not totally stupid and that’s where the strategy. This is probably the same reason that drove Mozilla to choose Yandex in Russia and Baidu in China.


Stephen Karsch is technology geek who loves everything connected with high tech, programming and software.