Baidu, China’s leading search engine, is a “learning platform” that becomes smarter with increased user activity. Founded by Robin Li in 2000, it was designed to cater to search users, webpages, and advertisers. Baidu, like other learning platforms, can serve both human and digital agents, enhancing their service based on the overall and individual user activity.
I recently wrote about Baidu as an example of learning platforms (one of my five platform types). Located here, I said: “My definition for learning platforms has 4 key points: The primary purpose of the platform is to enable interactions between user groups within a greater ecosystem. It is, first and foremost, a platform business […]
In Part 1 and Part 2, I laid out Baidu’s core search engine and some of the complexities that have evolved in search over time. I have three strategy questions for Baidu going forward: How competitive will a stand-alone search engine be against China’s larger digital giants over time? Can Baidu create a second large […]
In this podcast, Jeffrey Towson discusses Baidu’s key strategic questions, including its best growth opportunity, whether it needed to go into content, and how it can compete in the attention market. He argues that Baidu’s best growth opportunity is in the cloud, but that it needs to be careful not to overextend itself. He also believes that Baidu needs to focus on its core search business and not get distracted by other ventures.
In Part 1, I laid out some basic theory for Baidu and search engines. I think it was a pretty solid picture for Baidu circa 2010. But strange things have been happening since then. Baidu has moved into entertainment, services (for a while), content creation and self-driving cars. I’m not sure if these were strategic […]