MWC 2008: T-Mobile drops Google for Yahoo

German-owned mobile operator opts to go with Yahoo for mobile search, leaving behind a previous partnership with Google.

T-Mobile and Yahoo have announced a partnership on mobile search, marking the end of Google's breakthrough mobile deal with the operator in 2005.

Three years ago, T-Mobile and Google partnered to position the web search giant as the home page for the mobile operator's Web and Walk data service.

The announcement at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona today means T-Mobile will feature Yahoo's oneSearch for its mobile services as of the end of March 2008, leaving Google out of the picture.

"We believe we have found the best mobile search solution," said Christopher Schlaffer, group products and innovation officer at T-Mobile.

The Yahoo system is based on the idea of federated search, which gives contextual results from multiple sources rather than just the web, he said. For example, a search might yield maps, listings, photos, news, and downloads - as well as links to sources on the web.

"It delivers results, not just web links," said Marco Boerries, executive vice president of Connected Life at Yahoo. He added: "It's designed with mobile phones in mind, a very different approach to what other companies have in mind."

While that may be a dig at a certain other search engine, Google had some good news of its own at MWC this week, signing a similar partnership with Nokia.

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