Baidu, China's predominant search engine has signed a deal with Microsoft's Bing to offer an English language search to Baidu's users. This comes as we've known for some time that Baidu has wanted to move beyond China and Microsoft wishes to increase its market share.
According to a report from Reuters, the partnership will allow the input of English words into the search box in which it will then automatically activate the Bing search engine. With this partnership, Microsoft will certainly be getting a step up given that China has an estimated 450 million internet users. With that figure in mind, it presents as the world's largest internet market with the most potential for growth, since users out of the big cities complete less sophisticated tasks over the internet.
Last year Google pulled out of China after a row over censorship with Beijing, leaving Baidu with the biggest share in the search market at around 76%. Dong Xo, from Analysys International said that "the cooperation between Baidu and Microsoft will further strengthen Baidu's dominance in China's search engine market, and will also make Google's business in China more difficult".
We may be seeing more from Baidu in the future as its growth increases to fill the gap that Google left behind and taps into the lucrative Chinese market. The shares of the search engine company grew by 48% this year so far alone. In relation to this, it recently paid $306 million for a majority stake in Qunar, a travel website, which signals its desires to broaden its business.