Apple has switched back to using Google for their search results needs in both iOS and their Mac operating system over Spotlight search, TechCrunch reports. Google and Apple spokespersons confirmed this with Search Engine Land via email.
The “search the web” results you get in both search interfaces will no longer be pointing to Bing, but rather will show you results from Google. In 2014, Apple officially dropped Google results and switched to Bing. Google and Apple have a deal that’s been estimated to be worth $3 billion, and it is unclear if this is part of that deal or not.
Here is a statement TechCrunch received from Apple:
“Switching to Google as the web search provider for Siri, Search within iOS and Spotlight on Mac will allow these services to have a consistent web search experience with the default in Safari. We have strong relationships with Google and Microsoft and remain committed to delivering the best user experience possible.”
Here is a screen shot of iOS showing YouTube results, and then the “Search Web” button that takes you to Google results:
It is reported that this began rolling out at 9 a.m. PT in the US and should roll out to the entire world by this afternoon. The results are all encrypted on the iOS and Mac side, but once you go to Google, Google can then start tracking search behavior.
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