GIF Search Startup Tenor To Be Acquired By Google

Google is purchasing Tenor, a GIF images search platform as the tech giant moves to bolster search data besides offering advertisers an advertising format that is increasingly becoming popular. Terms of the deal were however not disclosed. According to Google’s engineering director, Cathy Edwards, searches for GIFs have been increasing on a daily basis as people look for images that will assist them in communicating and expressing themselves.

On a monthly basis the Tenor platform gets around 300 million visitors who use its search tool for GIFs. Every month the platforms serves search results numbering approximately 12 billion. Once the deal is concluded Tenor will not change its name though it will operate under Google.

Leading app

Since it was launched three years ago the startup has become dominant in the mobile GIF-sharing space. Some of its competitors include Giphy. In its category the GIF Keyboard of Tenor is the most popular with the highest number of downloads on both Android and iOS over the last two years per App Annie, an analytics firm. The average number of downloads of Tenor’s GIF app has actually been double that of Giphy. On Facebook Messenger the GIF bot of Tenor is the most frequently used chat bot while on iMessage is the second most popular free app after GamePigeon.

According to Tenor the acquisition will assist the firm in improving the product to the benefit of advertisers, developers and users. The co-founder of Tenor, David McIntosh, revealed that he will continue to head the company assisted by his co-founders, Frank Nawabi and Erick Hachenburg.

“Tenor has been acquired by Google to help us execute on our mission to help all three billion mobile users find the perfect way to visually express themselves,” wroteMcIntosh in an online posting.

Advertising business

Since later last year the GIF startup has been bolstering its ad business. This has seen the firm ink deals with major brands with a view to conducting sponsored GIF campaigns. One of the campaigns could for instance involve a GIF of a person eating pizza whenever words such as hungry or starving are typed in a search.

The search engine of Tenor is equipped to learn patterns and this ensures that more relevant GIFs are served with increased usage. Speed is also essential for Tenor since the average user only takes around 20 seconds to search for a GIF and then send it. Per Magid Advisors, a consumer research firm, nearly 100 million Americans send at the minimum one GIF every week.

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