Is Facebook Building a Search Engine?

April 2, 2012

Would you be surprised if Facebook came out with a search engine that rivaled Google?

While Facebook hasn’t made search a priority  just yet, there has been buzz that it would be releasing a search engine in the future when this past February, Mark Zuckerberg posted an image of a sign reading, “Stay focused & keep shipping.” Alongside the sign, an open MacBook had an elongated white box at the top of a Facebook page, similar to that of a search engine. Many people were wondering if this was done on purpose.

More than 20 Facebook engineers, led by a former Google engineer, Lars Rasmussen, are working on creating an improved search engine for Facebook. Right now, users can mostly only search for other members. If this rumor turns out to be true, it’s supposed to help users make the most of content that users create on and off of Facebook like status updates, videos, articles, “likes” from across the web, etc.

Not only will search be more convenient for users, but Facebook can profit tremendously from the $15 billion search advertising market.

While this search engine could be huge for Facebook, it’s just another rival for Google who not too long ago came out with their own social network, Google+. If this search engine does happen, will Facebook users be more inclined to use it over Google for search?

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