Google has expanded the list of default search engines in a recent update to the chromium engine, which powers its popular Chrome browser, to give users more choice when deciding how they wish to search.
The search giant has expanded its search engine lists to include more privacy-focused search engines such as DuckDuckGo in over 60 global markets.
The changes are part of the Chromium 73 stable release and could help Google counter backlash over rising privacy and antitrust scrutiny from government agencies.
A number of governments have begun to question how the company and other tech giants make it difficult for smaller businesses to compete and by adding rival search products to its browser, Google is showing its willingness to foster competition in the space.
Privacy-focused search engines
While Google has added support for a number of new search engines, DuckDuckGo is likely the most popular new addition as the privacy-focused search engine has gained a great deal of traction in recent months as users have begun to value their privacy more.
Additionally, the French search engine Qwant has been added as a new option but only in its home country.
According to a note about the changes to chromium’s default search engine lists on GitHub, Google software engineer Orin Jaworksi explained that the list was updated as a result of “recently collected data” and “new usage statistics”.
By giving users more choices over which search engine they use, Google is protecting itself from increased regulation while simultaneously helping to advocate for improved privacy.
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