Neeva: An Ad-free, User First, Search Engine being developed by IIT grads to ensure your privacy is protected.
What is Neeva?
- Neeva is an upcoming search engine developed by two former Google executives. It will provide an ad-free free search experience and ensure absolute data safety.
- The company is planning to launch the search engine by mid-2021, first in the USA and later on in regions like Western Europe, Australia and India.
Who is behind the idea?
- Sridhar Ramaswamy and Vivek Raghunathan are IIT graduates at Chennai and Mumbai respectively, who are striving to rethink and rework core technology.
- Neeva CEO Ramaswamy, ex-SVP of Ads at Google, believes that they can create a much better search product, focusing solely on what a customer needs.
- Raghunathan, ex VP of Monetisation at YouTube was also the first tech lead of what is now called the Google Assistant
- Their current team comprises 45 members.
How is Neeva different from other browsers?
- By integrating your personal services, Neeva allows you to directly search for personal data stored on services like Dropbox and email accounts
- Their mission is to serve the needs of users only.
- Although there are some alternatives to Google Search such as DuckDuckGo, which also promises data safety, Neeva hopes to provide a tailor-made search experience specifically for the end-user.
- Neeva has also published a ‘Bill of Rights’ on its website that notes how the company hopes to operate and limit the collection of user data.
Check out the Whastapp Uproar due to changes in its Terms of Service that affects user privacy.
What is the business model of Neeva?
- Neeva is a customer-first and customer only service and this will be their major revenue source going forward. Thus, we can expect a reasonable user fee for availing its services.
- Neeva has raised $37.5 million so far, with equal investments from Greylock, Sequoia Capital and Ramaswamy himself.
What are the expected challenges?
- Offering a paid product is the motivation for Ramaswamy.
- He cites the example of services like Spotify and Dropbox, which succeeded in segments where there was no dearth of free options, and hopes that Neeva may also compel its competitors to cut back on ads.
With the ever expanding scope of technology and its high degree of integration in our daily lives, the lines between private and digital domains have become blurred. All users are not aware of the vast personal data that companies track and record. And neither is all the data collection by companies justified. So awareness and efforts of Neeva’s teams are truly commendable to ensure the sanctity and protection of user data. We hope they soon realise their ultimate goal of offering a service that neither shows ads nor profits from user data thus helping users to gain control over their digital life.
Are you excited about the Ad-free Search Engine?
Researched and written by Dharshan V, Team ulaunch.