Quietly, Firefox tests historical change and surprises users

Anyone who uses Firefox is already used to having Google as the default search engine when performing searches. But that could change soon, after all Mozilla is conducting an experiment with a small group of users who will default to Microsoft Bing. For now, only 1% of desktop users have the “new” search engine and this is expected to continue through January.

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Even with this forced change, the user can still reset his preference to the default settings. It’s extra work, but it can help Mozilla measure the acceptance or rejection of your change.

For some users, Bing will be the default Firefox engine (Image: Screenshot/Canaltech)

Google is still the darling of people not only because of the size of the company or the its fame, but because, in the majority view, it presents the most accurate search results. The company is also constantly reformulating to deliver new solutions, such as natural language comprehension, integration with Lens and information hubs – Covid cases-19 and the Tokyo Olympics 2020.

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A possible generalized change for the Bing is something that surprises the market, as Google accounts for more than three-quarters of Mozilla’s annual revenue, as a result of integration with the search engine. The main speculation in this regard is that Microsoft may be willing to shell out more money than its rival to conquer space in Firefox.

New sources of revenue

Mozilla is interested in creating other ways to generate revenue, such as subscription products and VPN , to try to remain less dependent on others. Abandoning your long-time partner, however, seems like a risky thing to do, unless there is a more consistent proposal on the other side.

But the shift can also be related to the Preserving user privacy: With FLoC, Google has aroused the distrust of many browser developers, particularly Mozilla. The organization was one of the first to announce that it does not agree with the proposed new model, because it would be flawed and would open loopholes for collecting much more data than the current ones.

The search engine market has remained stable in the last 21 months (Image : Playback/StatCounter)

Data from the Statcounter company reveals that Google is the most used search engine, with 48,03% from the market. In second place, Bing has only 2,48% of total searches, a number that remains stable in the last years. Yahoo, Baidu, Yandex and DuckDuckGo complete the TOP 5, with a combined audience of the four rivals of 7,19%.

In response to the TechRadar portal’s request for comments, the organization limited itself to saying that it conducts regular studies and that, at the moment, the experiment changes the mechanism standard search engine. Of course, it can’t be said that Mozilla will actually abandon its successful partnership to close a deal with Microsoft. As the tests run until January, there is still a lot of water to pass under the bridge and the receptivity may be worse (or better) than expected.

Source: TechRadar, StatCounter

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