Cake Technologies has raised $5 million to expand its business and tackle a very ambitious goal; stealing market share off internet browsers Chrome and Safari.
Any challenge to the status quo should be more than welcomed but this is a tall ask. Cake is aiming to deliver an internet browser which is developed specifically for mobile devices in an attempt to make a name for itself in the highly lucrative search advertising business. The idea is sound but whether the entrenched position of Google’s Chrome and Apple’s Safari can be dislodged is another matter.
“There’s a lot of room for innovation when it comes to the mobile browser, and Cake has found a sweet spot,” said Sid Krommenhoek, Partner at Peak Ventures, the firm which led the funding round.
“Since the smartphone was introduced in 2007, storage capacity alone has increased more than 60x, yet the mobile browser has hardly changed in a decade. We see a huge opportunity for Cake to disrupt industry heavyweights by providing quicker access to search results in a way that is much more user-friendly.”
As with any good new idea, the functionality is simple and addresses an irritating problem which users have just got used to by now. By suppressing the search index and immediately preloading search results, users are able to search through search results as web pages, instead of tapping back and forth between a list of result links.
Web browsers haven’t really changed over the last couple of years, and the frustration of having to load a webpage before reloading the initial results list is a hindrance most users have just become accustomed to. The only reason for this acceptance is there isn’t an alternative option which is why such a challenge, with an new approach, might have a chance of catching on.
It is a very good idea, but we are struggling to see how Cake will be able to lure users away from the norm; Cake does not have a platform where it will be loaded as the default option. This will be the biggest challenge as far as we can see, primarily because people are inherently lazy.
Google and Apple have created a dominance in the world of mobile internet browsers because they have a mobile operating system. The Chrome and Safari apps are preloaded as default on devices, while most apps are pre-linked to the relevant browser (depending whether the app has been designed for Android or iOS). For Cake to succeed, it would have to convince users to actively download and use an alternative to the default.
There is nothing passive about it and it removes the idea of convenience. Like we said before, most people are lazy, happily taking the path of least resistance especially when that path is a successful and proven option.
That said, this is a very interesting idea put forward by Cake. We can’t really see the firm offering any real challenge to the dominance of Chrome or iOS, but we can foresee changes in the future. Should the experience actually prove to be positive for users, it won’t be long before Google or Apple are developing their own version in-house or will be looking to acquire Cake. Change might be on the horizon, just not in the way Cake probably hopes or wants.