If you've been on the web for almost a decade now then you'd know that Ask.com was one of the initial search engines which were equivalent of Google back then. Okay, does Ask Jeeves ring any bells? According to AFP reports, Ask.com is laying off 130 staffers located in U.S. and China. The company plans to refocus on its Question and Answer service that involves real humans to answer questions. Looks like Ask.com is going to be pretty literal.
Leslie Cafferty, a spokeswoman for Ask's owner IAC, said the move was a part of a strategic shift by Ask to focus on its Q&A service rather than the traditional search, which is dominated by Google with over 66 percent share of the U.S. search market. But now, Ask is going to concentrate on its new Q&A based service that was introduced back in July this year.
Last week, Ask.com launched its Q&A services for mobile devices starting off with an iPhone App. The company plans to go big on the Q&A service which is deemed to compete with the Quora.com which was founded by Ex-Facebook CTO and VP of Engineering - Adam D'Angelo with Charlie Cheever who led the Facebook Connect and Facebook Platform.
But the demise of Ask.com won't stop any more search engines to give up. We recently reported about Blekko search engine based on Slash technology and there might be many more to come. Not every search engine would come out to compete with someone as big as Google or Microsoft Bing. As of now, let's observe a moment of silence for Ask.com's search engine and look forward to its Q&A service.
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