How will Web3 impact search engines?

The next iteration of the internet, known as Web3, has decentralization, censorship resistance, and privacy protection at its core. The search engines of the future have the potential to reflect these fundamental characteristics. 

3 ways Web3 will improve search results

#1 Decentralization helps combat censorship and protect privacy.

Today’s search engines use central databases that raise trust concerns. Whether the search giant Google interferes with results or even censors them has been the center of attention in recent years’ debates. Leading social media companies have repeatedly received their shares of similar claims. 

Another problem with centralized search engines is that they use cookies to track our online activities and save our personal data to share with advertisers. Although Google plans to block third-party cookies, it won’t be effective until 2024. Even if it’s deployed, it won’t be a sufficient solution to allay worries about data privacy.  

Decentralization transfers the power from a few central entities to distributed blockchain networks of peer-to-peer participants. As a result, we can access search results while maintaining our privacy because no intermediary interferes with them. 

#2 Web3 works well with Artificial Intelligence (AI).

AI is one of the major factors, if not the most important, that will shape the future of the internet. Technologies like natural language processing (NLP) are simplifying human-machine communication. As a result, intuitive search methods like voice commands and visual search become possible. The latter is already very popular. According to Think with Google, 20% of all Google App searches are done by voice search. 

AI in Web3

Moreover, AI algorithms can learn from users’ behaviors and recommend personalized products. All e-commerce giants implement such solutions to serve customers better and boost their sales. 

However, if AI handles unencrypted data, security and privacy issues arise. If, on the other hand, we integrate blockchain solutions with AI, we can have a better internet that protects privacy without forgoing advanced search methods provided by AI technologies. 

#3 Augmented reality (AR) and Web3 facilitate geo search in metaverse applications. 

It’s now widely accepted that metaverse and web3 are interrelated and immersive technologies like augmented reality play central roles in the evolution of both. 

Like AI, these technologies are growing at a rapid pace and transforming how we search visually. Aside from visual search, augmented reality is also particularly powerful for geo-based search, as it functions based on the user’s current location. 

Businesses are already leveraging the geo-based search concept to target prospects in real-time. However, using AR along with blockchain technology will open doors to immersive and intuitive location-based searching in future metaverse applications. 

Do Web3 search engines currently exist?

Yes, and Presearch is one of them. The company is building an ecosystem, not only a search engine. It will also include elements inherent in the other blockchain and crypto ecosystems, such as a community, native token, and dedicated marketplace. The team set out to enable advertisers to bid on keywords by staking the native token PRE, a brand-new idea, still it immediately resonates with those familiar with crypto concepts. Moreover, keyword stakers will be able to trade the native token PRE on the marketplace. 

Another noteworthy Web3 search engine is Neeva.xyz. It’s still in the preliminary stages. However, private search engine Neeva develops it, a company that already has experience enabling user-controlled web searches. The company has recently raised $40M in a round led by Paradigm to further develop its Web3-powered search engine.

An interesting new generation search engine that functions very much as the RSS feeds, but is decentralized, is rss3.io. It keeps track of activities in major crypto wallets, primarily those registered on the Ethereum blockchain. The company also partnered with the Lens protocol to enable feeds from decentralized social media apps. 

Finally, we can also think of block explorers as web3 search engines. Although not very intuitive and user-friendly, they are great resources that index every transaction on blockchains. The most well-known is Etherscan which allows us to search through transactions on Ethereum.

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