Facebook is getting "on the order of a billion search queries a day," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said today on stage at the TechCrunch Disrupt trade show in San Francisco, "and we aren't even trying." The queries are mostly searches for people, he said, but users are also using Facebook to hunt for apps and businesses.
The CEO affirmed that Facebook will build a search business at some point. "I think there is a big opportunity there at some point and we just need to go do that," he said, before bashing Google and other search engines that return a list of results. "Search is evolving to giving you a set of answers... 'I have a specific question, answer this question for me.' Facebook is pretty uniquely positioned to answer a lot of questions that people have."
The company already has a team working on search, Zuckerberg said. "When I said we weren't trying, I was being facetious," he admitted, but implied that search is not a priority for Facebook — yet. "At some point, we will do it," he told interviewer Mike Arrington. That's definitely not what Google, already threatened by Facebook's advertising business, wants to hear.