Baidu and Sina forge mobile pact - Mobile World Live

Baidu and Sina forge mobile pact

31 JUL 2012

Two of China’s largest Internet firms, Baidu and Sina, have forged a partnership to more closely align their mobile offerings.

Baidu is the country’s most popular search engine with an estimated 80 percent share of the local market, while Sina is the company behind Weibo, China’s Twitter-like microblogging service which boasts over 300 million users.

The BBC reports that Sina plans to integrate Baidu search into its mobile site, while Baidu’s cloud service is to come preinstalled on the Weibo app.

The two firms also plan to offer users a "better, richer mobile browsing experience.”

"Sina's Weibo is such an important source of content now  – it's really the pulse of the nation – that for Baidu being able to index the content and make it accessible to users is a fairly important way of keeping its edge in search,” Duncan Clark, chairman of consultancy BDA China, told the BBC.

Both firms have been working recently to adapt their strategies for mobile.

In May, Baidu made a play into China’s crowded low-cost smartphone market by launching its own device. The Foxconn-made Changhong H5018 is powered by Baidu's own mobile OS known as Cloud.

In the same month, Sina announced that the majority of Weibo users were now accessing the service via mobile devices rather than desktop PCs.