Yun Yun is a social search service. Literally it’s Cloud Cloud in Chinese, or it can mean somebody says something if you take the two characters as a verb. Developed by a team of former Googlers, led by the former head of Google China’s Chinese-language search, who went off on their own after Google’s retreat in 2010, Yun Yun received much attention along the way. Before going live to public last night, it had been in beta testing from March 2012.

At the same time, the team has been helping Sina Weibo with mobile searches on Android end and will launch an iOS version later. It is rumored that Sina Weibo will replace its own search engine with Yun Yun’s all together.

Yun Yun indexes entries from Chinese micro-blogging services, offering general search, real-time search, image search and a social network. Its general web search ranks results based on relevance of Weibo messages; the real-time search is based on timeliness. Personalized results are enabled, based on logged-in users’ search data and their interests on other social sites. The social network it has with micro-blogging and Q&A features was aimed to create social content for the search service, but later the team decided not to focus on it.

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Tracey Xiang

Tracey Xiang is Beijing, China-based tech writer. Reach her at traceyxiang@gmail.com