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Taptu is an alternative search engine that has just been released as an iPhone app, though it has a version that can be used on any mobile browser.

What Taptu does is to return results from mobile friendly websites. Some websites can be a pain to use on the iPhone, so a dedicated search engine for mobile sites is a good idea. I've been trying it out...

The homepage of the app is a simple search box, so you can enter any term and return results from mobile optimised websites.


Underneath the search box, you can scroll left or right to find suggested categories of mobile sites, shopping, music, sport etc, which can be useful for browsing when you don't have a specific search term in mind.

After choosing sport, for instance, you can then scroll through all the related mobile sites:

Taptu sports site

Tapping the Taptu logo to the right of the search box brings up a series of useful filters for your search results:

Taptu search filters

This is a useful way to filter your search and avoid too many irrelevant results, or to search for news on any particular topic, such as the current events in Iran: 

Taptu news search

Or search for any keyword(s) on Twitter:

Taptu Twitter search

The filters also change according to the search terms you type in, allowing you to drill down further and be more specific if your initial search results didn't do the trick.

So, for a search on 'BMW', I get related terms and subcategories; 'top BMW vehicles', or related brands like VW or Porsche:

Taptu search filters

The quality of search results varies, on some topics such as SEO, they can be fairly poor, so I often found it easier to either browse through sites in the suggested categories or apply filters before searching.

It's a well designed and useful app, with some excellent features like the search filters. Being able to search for mobile optimised sites certainly saves time attempting to navigate desktop sites. It's free to download too, so well worth a try.

Graham Charlton

Published 18 June, 2009 by Graham Charlton

Graham Charlton is the former Editor-in-Chief at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter or connect via Linkedin or Google+

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