Apple recently confirmed that it will be offering Baidu as an additional search engine option for iOS users in China, while Google will remain the default. In an interview with Bloomberg, Baidu’s vice president Wang Jing said that as part of the deal, it will be sharing its advertising revenue with Apple, although he did not reveal the specific commercial terms.
Baidu has similar revenue-sharing agreements in place with Android smartphone manufacturers to get them to ship their devices with Baidu on board. Although 80 percent of Internet search inquiries performed in China are already through Baidu, the company still needs to secure its dominance in mobile search as Chinese consumers are increasingly accessing the web via their mobile devices.
About 80 percent of Android-based smartphones in China already have Baidu integration. And now Apple will be integrating Baidu in iOS 6, which is expected to launch this fall. The integration will include tying in Baidu search results to Apple’s Siri intelligent assistant feature, which will also be able to understand Mandarin. Additionally, Apple is extending its support to other popular Chinese services including micro-blogging site Sina Weibo and video sharing services Youku and Tudou.