Though the company’s infancy was not without its share of trauma, text message-based search engine ChaCha has come of age, according to a Dow Jones report. This development highlights the possibility of search success even within an industry dominated by Google.
Dow Jones reports that, when ChaCha’s mobile service went live in 2008, Google had more or less the entirety of the mobile text market. However, the report cites sources at Nielsen Mobile as saying that ChaCha has actually surpassed the California-based giant in mobile text traffic – a coup that few companies which compete with Google in the internet search market can match.
The company’s flagship service asks users to text questions to 242-242 – hence the company name – and says that they will receive answers in minutes, making the service attractive to non-smartphone users and possibly opening a new market for search engine optimization (SEO).
ChaCha reported today that their fundraising totals had reached $52 million over the four years of the company’s existence, on the strength of a $7-million "E" round of venture capital investment.