Google and Apple are like a divorced couple being forced to dance together at their child’s wedding. They hate each other, but it’d cost too much to make a scene. Yahoo! is hoping to be the trophy wife who cuts in, by replacing Google as Apple’s default search engine.
Currently, this is just a blind hope on the part of Yahoo!, according to Re/Code. But they’re being fairly aggressive about it:
A number of Yahoo insiders I have talked to said her plan to pitch Apple on the idea as its marquee mobile search partner is far along. The company has prepared detailed decks, including images of what such a search product would look like, and hopes to present them to Apple execs.
That has not happened as yet officially and no deal is imminent — it’s just the big honking goal of the new Yahoo effort, said sources. Still, several said Mayer has already buttonholed a few Apple executives on the topic, including its powerful SVP of design, Jony Ive, who knows the former Google exec well.
Why would Apple change the default? Essentially, because Google is basically taking over mobile. Apple finds itself essentially reenacting the 1980s all over again: It was an innovator and practically created a market, only to discover that having the right image only matters to people who can afford your products. Everybody else is just buying an Android.
Apple can’t stop that process, but it has shown in the past that it doesn’t want to help Google beat it up. Really, that’s just good business strategy.
Of course, the last time they decided to dramatically cut ties with Google, we got the infamous Apple Maps disaster. So Apple may not be very enthusiastic about stepping so far away from Google. Similarly, it would be impossible to lock Google out completely; all Yahoo! could get would be to be set as the default, and thus become the search engine for people who don’t know how to open the settings tab.
But this is Yahoo!, the company willing to try anything to try and claw back some relevance on the Internet. So expect them to push this hard, even if it’s never going to happen.