I like / I don’t like … the Qwant search engine: the opinion of Gilles Babinet and Ouriel Ohayon

by bold-lichterman

“I like it because Qwant puts almost all of Facebook in SEO. The Qwant team is 4 or 5 ultra-competent developers, who have experience at Google, and a mastery of French mathematics, which today explains the performance of their own algorithm. Only downside for me: there is no place on Qwant where you can synchronize searches at once.

“The grip does not make you want to go further. The design is confusing and the ergonomics complex. Especially on the mobile version which mixes research genres. Of course, we all want a better engine, but quality is first and foremost clarity over relevance. On the subject of relevance, I have not seen an exponential improvement compared to Google or even Bing ”.

Launched in beta in February 2013, the search engine made in France yesterday inaugurated its final version.

Founded by financier Jean-Manuel Rozan, IT security specialist Eric Léandri and the Pertimm company (which notably created the search engines for Meetic and the PagesJaunes site), Qwant does not aim to compete with Google, but rather to stand out from it.

Indeed, Qwant displays the results in a rather unusual way, classifying the information by columns and according to a color code according to whether it comes from blogs or news sites, social networks or e-commerce sites. Each result corresponds to a box, allowing either to access the content by clicking on a link, or to share it directly on social networks using the dedicated buttons. These are particularly highlighted in the operation of Qwant: the engine indeed offers 3 search tabs, including “People”, which allows you to launch a query only on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and others.

Screenshot 2013-07-05 at 06.10.33

Finally, the Qwant team, in the midst of the PRIMS affair, emphasizes confidentiality. According to Eric Léandri, the 100% French search engine wants to be entirely “cookie-free”, and only uses content posted publicly by its users outside of Qwant, to increase the relevance of the results. But it remains to be seen how long the service will be “cookie-free”, when it will be necessary to seriously consider monetizing …

Since its first launch in February, Qwant has been used by 3.5 million visitors, and has a total of 250 million requests. According to its founders, 70% of visitors returned to the search engine after their first visit.