Quixey, which describes itself as a search engine for apps rather than an alternative app store, has announced deeper “functional search” within apps. Previously, Quixey allowed app discovery by keyword or category, delivering users to the “front door” of relevant apps. Now, Quixey will surface information that “lives inside of apps.”
Quixey offers web-based app search across platforms, an Android app (no iOS app today) and powers app search for a range of partners including Ask, Skyfire, Dolphin Browser, DuckDuckGo, StarHub, Sprint and others. The company’s CEO Tomer Kagan told me there are other partners not yet announced.
Kagan is essentially positioning Quixey as a general alternative to Google when it comes to in-app search. Yet Google is also trying to get to the same place. Last October Google announced app indexing to enable content discovery from within Android apps only.
The screenshot immediately above is a Quixey provided search result for the query “how to bake a cake.” It shows specific content and references to cake baking within multiple apps. The Quixey Android app doesn’t yet reflect these new search results. They’ll be rolling out in the near future however.
Quixey says that its deeper, functional app search will also empower developers and allow them to present their content as desired, not in terms that are dictated by app stores and major search engines. The company said this morning in a blog post, “[W]e’re also opening a new developer program that will help developers champion this approach to the web and search, and help them build their apps so they’re searchable and indexed. Developers can sign up at developers.quixey.com.”
The functionality and content are needed and I believe desired by consumers, for whom app discovery remains a challenge. However for Quixey the challenge is generating awareness and usage. Its growing partner network helps but when it comes to app search and discovery Google Play and the Apple App Store remain the dominant sources for consumers.
The positioning of Quixey as a search engine and not an app store alternative will likely help differentiate the company and gain new usage.