Yandex Is Now The Default Search Engine For WP7 In Russia

Yandex_logoWhile you would think Microsoft would have leveraged the Windows Phone platform to get add more use of its search engine, Bing, but things are looking otherwise in Russia. The news coming from Russia’s Search Giant, is that Yandex is going to be used as the default search engine on all Windows Phone based devices in Russia. This  announcement includes the company’s announcement of partnering with major mobile manufacturing giants like Nokia, HTC and Samsung.

Currently the Yandex’s search engine is installed on the Samsung Omnia W, Nokia’s Lumia 800 and Lumia 710. While only the Samsung Omnia W is on sale in Russia, Nokia’s handsets are set to make an entry in the Russian Markets by December. The other entrant running on the Windows Phone and to have Yandex as a default search engine will be HTC, this will be achieved with an update to the HTC devices. The date hasn’t been set, but we can anticipate the same to happen by December or January, 2012.

I think it makes more sense to include a native search engine for the people in Russia. While the language support does exist on Bing, it should be taken into consideration that Yandex leads search in the homeland. Along with that, Yandex offers multiple services other than just Search (we have spoken extensively about them, Yandex Taxi is one). Tigran Khudaverdyan, Head of Web Portal and Mobile Services at Yandex also acknowledged the fact that Yandex has already developed applications for the Windows Phone platform that include Yandex.Maps and Yandex.Market, she stated:

Windows Phone is a new operating system with great potential. It is bound to catch attention in Russia. It’s good to know that the Windows Phone users in this country will have familiar Yandex search on their new devices.

At the end of the day, it’s all about reaching out to people. The Windows Phone platform has attracted quite some interest amongst the smartphone users and bringing a more local flavor will only help Microsoft gain more votes in terms of user friendliness. Let’s see how fruitful this actually turns out for both Yandex and the Windows Phone platform in Russia.