Qihoo 360, China’s biggest anti-virus vendor, launched a search engine “so.360.cn” on 16 August in public beta and soon became the second largest traffic source to many websites like chinaz.com and dxy.cn.
Since 20 August, Qihoo has replaced the default search engine with its own on its directory site hao.360.cn and its own browsers. Due to the popularity of Qihoo’s products like web browser, it’s definitely a threat to Baidu. Some influencers like Kingsoft CEO Fu Sheng claim that 360 Search now has about 10% of search market in China.
Baidu has started displaying a notice to users referred by 360 Search on its Q&A site Baidu Zhidao, alerting users to set Baidu as its homepage or add a shortcut on desktop.
Update: 360 is now using so.com.