Brave Search has recently introduced privacy-preserving image and video search results, liberating itself from the dependence on Microsoft and Google.
The announcement states:
“Users will no longer need to leave Brave Search for image and video search results. Now, any Brave Search query can be served directly from Brave’s index, enabling users to benefit from a fully independent search engine that protects their privacy and is censorship-resistant.”
This new feature comes after Brave Search discontinued its usage of Bing’s API for image and video results in May.
Initially, during this transition phase, Brave allowed users to redirect to Bing or Google for convenience while working on their in-house solution.
The company acknowledged that this temporary redirect “was not popular with some users”, but it was necessary to maintain familiar search habits during the transition period.
Why Independent Image Search Matters
As web content takes up the majority of search queries, image and video search has become more fragmented across different social media and content platforms.
However, Brave argues that relying on these services often compromises user privacy.
“Whether it’s a matter of personal safety or personal preference, users should be able to discover content without their search engine reporting and profiling those results to a Big Tech company.”
Brave promotes its image search capabilities as private and anonymous, aligning with its ethos.
This launch expands Brave’s capabilities as an independent search engine.
“With the ability to search for crucial vertical categories such as images and videos directly within Brave, users can now access even more content than before.”
Brave emphasizes the importance of self-reliance in resisting censorship.
The company points to a 2019 incident where Microsoft’s Bing search engine blocked image results related to the Tiananmen Square protests.
“By serving image/video results directly from Brave Search’s independent index, we can ensure a better check on Big Tech censorship and put our users in charge of their browsing experience.”
The company acknowledges that its image search does not currently match the advanced capabilities of rival search engines, but it believes independence is more important at this stage.
Brave Search was launched in beta in early 2021 and has since expanded into a privacy-focused alternative to dominant search engines like Google and Bing.
The Brave browser also blocks online tracking by default.
Featured Image: evgenii mitroshin/Shutterstock
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