Mobile Search Still Different from Desktop Search

OMMA Magazine columnist Steve Smith weighed in on mobile search, saying that while it may appear indistinguishable from Web queries one day in the future, for now people come to mobile search with very different expectations than Web search.

“The mobile Web is a parallel universe created for people on-the-go,” said Omar Tawakol, chief advertising officer of Medio, in the article. “The state of mind is different.”

“Medio, which serves about 40 percent of U.S. mobile searches, found that after adult content (11 percent of mobile searches), 7 percent of queries involved a Web or WAP portal like Google or Yahoo and specific URLs,” according to Smith. “Users are indeed starting to look for that wider Web. Generally, however, mobile searches want direct answers: What’s the weather? What’s the score? Where’s the store? Where are you?”

The column goes on to discuss issues with mobile search, such as the local advertiser problem–wouldn’t it be interesting if a restaurant store owner’s ad appeared on someone’s cell phone as she searched for nearby pizza places?–and the technical issues that make this a challenge at the moment.

The Parallel Universe of Mobile Search [OMMA Magazine]