Apple Works On Its Own Search Engine As Regulators Turn Up Heat On Google Deal: FT

Apple Works On Its Own Search Engine As Regulators Turn Up Heat On Google Deal: FT

Apple Inc AAPL is ramping up efforts to develop its own search technology amid a backdrop of antitrust scrutiny over its relationship with Google parent Alphabet Inc GOOGL GOOG, the Financial Times reported Wednesday.

What Happened: The development would cast a shadow on the multibillion-dollar payments that the search engine giant makes to the Tim Cook-led company, according to FT.

Apple has reportedly begun to include its own search results and directly link to websites in the latest version of its iPhone operating system.

Apple frequently posting job opportunities for search engineers also points towards Apple’s ambitions in the field, FT noted.

There is a heightened sense of urgency surrounding search after the United States Department of Justice launched a case last week over payments Google makes to Apple for its place as the default search engine on the iPhone.

Digital market consultant Suganthan Mohanadasan told FT that Cupertino’s web crawler — Applebot — has shown up “a ridiculous number of times on his clients’ websites. “When the crawl rate increases, that tells us they are trying to gather more information,” said Mohanadasan.

Why It Matters: The move on search presents an alternative for the Cupertino, California-based company should it be forced to decouple from Google.

The Department of Justice estimated Google’s annual payments at $8 billion to $12 billion for the privilege of being the default search service on the iPhone — making up for 15-20% of Apple’s profits, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The DOJ complaint accuses the Sundar Pichai-led company of locking out competitors via exclusionary agreements

Building a new Google rival for Apple could take years, but the latter has cash reserves to the tune of $81 billion that gives it the wherewithal to build one over the long-term, noted FT.

Price Action: Apple shares closed 1.35% higher at $116.60 on Tuesday and fell 0.41% in the after-hours session.

The same day, Alphabet Class A and Class C shares both closed about 0.9% higher at $1,598.88 and $1,604.26, respectively.

Posted In: iPhonessearch engineThe Financial TimesNewsRumorsTechMedia

Ad Disclosure: The rate information is obtained by Bankrate from the listed institutions. Bankrate cannot guaranty the accuracy or availability of any rates shown above. Institutions may have different rates on their own websites than those posted on Bankrate.com. The listings that appear on this page are from companies from which this website receives compensation, which may impact how, where, and in what order products appear. This table does not include all companies or all available products.

All rates are subject to change without notice and may vary depending on location. These quotes are from banks, thrifts, and credit unions, some of whom have paid for a link to their own Web site where you can find additional information. Those with a paid link are our Advertisers. Those without a paid link are listings we obtain to improve the consumer shopping experience and are not Advertisers. To receive the Bankrate.com rate from an Advertiser, please identify yourself as a Bankrate customer. Bank and thrift deposits are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. Credit union deposits are insured by the National Credit Union Administration.

Consumer Satisfaction: Bankrate attempts to verify the accuracy and availability of its Advertisers' terms through its quality assurance process and requires Advertisers to agree to our Terms and Conditions and to adhere to our Quality Control Program. If you believe that you have received an inaccurate quote or are otherwise not satisfied with the services provided to you by the institution you choose, please click here.

Rate collection and criteria: Click here for more information on rate collection and criteria.