Dell confirms Baidu Vi partnership

Mobile Entertainment

September 2011

PC maker quickly aligns itself with China’s new Android-based OS.

Just days after Baidu, China’s most popular search engine, announced its new platform, Dell has thrown its weight behind the idea.

“We can confirm our partnership with Baidu for our smartphones in China through our participation in Baidu’s Mobile Terminal Union,” Dell Singapore spokeswoman Adeline Lee told The Register.

Dell will be hoping that China’s giant population can reverse its fortunes in mobile. Thus far, the Dell Streak smartphone has failed to set the market alight.

Baidu Yi was announced last week as an Android based OS that will display a Baidu search box on starting up, and offer a single sign-in that ties the user to the search engine’s services including mapping, cloud synchronisation, music download service and search.

It will also offer users 180 GB of storage space in the cloud to manage personal data.

However, though based on Android, Baidu Yi will strip out Google apps and services and replace them with own-branded stuff including maps and ebook reader.

Baidu has around 70 per cent of China’s online search market by revenues against 20 per cent for Google. But its share of the mobile search market is 35 per cent.

China has 485m internet users in total, and 318m already access the web on their mobile phones, according the China Internet Network Information Center, the state web registry.