Feeds

Baidu eyes up UCWeb deal to spur mobile growth

Search giant could swoop for stake in browser firm

Seven Steps to Software Security

Chinese search giant Baidu is set to take another important step towards expanding its mobile footprint in a tie-up with leading domestic mobile browsing player UCWeb.

The search firm, which now claims around 80 per cent of the huge Chinese market, is holding preliminary talks with company, according to a “person familiar with the matter” who spoke to Dow Jones on Friday.

There’s no further information on what size its possible stake in the browser firm would be, although previous reports swirling about in China claimed that UCWeb turned down a $400m offer from Baidu last year for a 49 per cent stake in its business.

China’s search leader has been gradually expanding its mobile capabilities – a wise move considering the huge mobile internet market in China.

In 2011, it launched the Android-based Yi OS on a Dell-manufactured phone and the firm is currently building a swanky new HQ for its mobile and international operations in Shenzhen.

It also announced plans for another push in the mobile platform market this year with Baidu Cloud, which it hopes will eventually be made available on a range of devices.

However, it is still not a trusted brand in mobile, so a tie-up with the country’s most popular mobile browser firm would make sense.

In fact, Baidu’s own 2012 Q1 Mobile Internet Development Trends Report revealed UCWeb to be the leading browser among Baidu users, with a 28.9 per cent share, although it dropped a worrying 4.3 per cent as rivals QQ and WebKit caught up.

Baidu’s strategy with mobile, like Alibaba and other big name web firms in China, is to use the mobile platform as a way of driving business to its online services.

A tie up with the browser firm could therefore certainly help in this respect, but time will tell what form that partnership will take.

In the meantime, Baidu has been busy with Apple, announcing an ad revenue sharing agreement which will see its search services offered as an option for new Chinese iPhone and iPad buyers. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
Airbus promises Wi-Fi – yay – and 3D movies (meh) in new A330
If the person in front reclines their seat, this could get interesting
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
UK Parliament rubber-stamps EMERGENCY data grab 'n' keep bill
Just 49 MPs oppose Drip's rushed timetable
Want to beat Verizon's slow Netflix? Get a VPN
Exec finds stream speed climbs when smuggled out
Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations
Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.