TikTok search results pages could soon have a link to Google results.
A feature spotted by app researcher Radu Oncescu shows the TikTok search results page including a link to search Google for the same query (via Insider). In another screenshot shared by Oncescu, a TikTok pop-up reads, “TikTok does not endorse or take responsibility for search results from Google.”
Google declined to comment. TikTok didn’t immediately respond to The Verge’s request for comment but confirmed to Insider that it’s testing the feature in some markets.
The addition of Google results linked in the TikTok app is the latest and most notable example of the shortform video app leaning into search. Earlier this month, we noticed that TikTok had quietly been adding Wikipedia snippets that link directly to the site. Snippets didn’t appear for every search but seem to be appearing for some locations, companies, and individuals. TikTok spokesperson Zachary Kizer told The Verge that the feature had been live for a few months.
The backdrop to a Google and TikTok partnership is the potentially pivotal antitrust case against Google that is currently underway. The US Department of Justice alleges that Google has unlawfully held on to its search dominance through expensive deals with companies like Apple that keep Google as the default search engine on products.
At the same time, TikTok could be under more scrutiny by regulators after the European Commission named the company in its list of “gatekeepers” that must abide by new rules under the Digital Markets Act (DMA). The DMA is an attempt to curb anti-competitive practices at major tech companies, and listed firms will be required to comply with certain rules based on how they’re being regulated. Messaging apps, for example, must be interoperable with other platforms, and users must be able to install third-party apps and app stores.