The name Sputnik should be familiar to a lot of people with a background in American history. It was, of course, the vessell that helped spark the space race between the United States and Russia. A new Russian project is being started in order to play catch up in an area where the United States already has a commanding lead and that is in search engines.
The state controlled Telecom service has been tasked with creating a search engine which is supposed to compete with the likes of Google.
Even with the backing from the state, it will still be a challenging task for Sputnik to gain market share as Yandex, which is based in the Netherlands, claims that it reigns over around 62% of all search traffic in Russia. Google, the world leader in terms of search engines, also has quite a healthy percentage in terms of search engine traffic in Russia.
Recent events involving Yandex may leave the company in trouble. The website recently lost one of its founders, IIya Segalovich, to cancer earlier in the year. This has consequently had people questioning the long term future of the company.
It looks like Sputnik could be right on time with their launch, which seems to be coinciding with Yandex's slow decline. Rostelecom has already invested about $20 million in the project and the service is set to launch sometime next year on the domain www.sputnik.ru.
Do you think that Sputnik will one day become a competitor to search engines like Yahoo!, Bing or Google? Let us know in the comment area below!