Dutch startup WizeNoze is going like a rocket. After the release of JouwZoekmachine – YourSearchEngine, the first search engine for kids – and a year full of successes, Diane Janknegt and her team launched the JouwZoekmachine-app in the App Store. On primary schools, the webversion of JouwZoekmachine is already widely used. Now there’s also the iOS-app, which children can use at home.
Kids who search the internet for information, are often confronted with difficult and non-relevant results. For WizeNoze the reason to start in September 2015 with JouwZoekmachine. 80% of the primary schools have already embraced the search tool. With the tool, kids can search on their own reading and comprehension level. “So a child of eight gets offered easier sources then a child of thirteen”, says Janknegt. Good to know: JouwZoekmachine is not a filter. “Our software is much more advanced. “For example, a filter blocks the word ‘sex’. Our technology does give results, adjusted on the age.”
To make the search process even simpler, WizeNoze released the JouwZoekmachine iOS-app. The app gives quick answers to every search question, tuned on the child’s own level of understanding. “Every kid gets his own account and can search on his own level in hundreds of thousands of reliable news- and information pages. We make the search process super personal.”
For the JouwZoekmachine-app, WizeNoze signed a deal with Van Dale. Parents can download the Van Dale youth dictionaries in the app. Kids find the correct meaning and spelling of words, together with all kinds of information from the internet. Everything together, all on their own level.
“People often think JouwZoekmachine is a kind of Google with an ad model. But that’s absolutely not the case. It’s are mission to enrich the internet. That’s why the app and the search engine are totally costless and ad free.”
But how does WizeNoze make money than? “We sell our technology to companies with interesting content. With our editing software, they can make their website child friendly and convert their content to another, simpler reading level.” Companies can also implement the search bar in their website. De Kindertelefoon and KPN are companies who use this tool.
The past half year was a rollercoaster for WizeNoze. Janknegt received €1,75 million of funding to grow her business and develop her software. WizeNoze also joined forces with ANP. “With our software ANP converts their news to another, child friendly level.” Google has decided to support the initiative and invested money. “It’s amazing to be recognized by such a leading tech-giant. Google also sees there’s too little content on the lower reading level.”
“We developed our software and app in a way that’s easily scalable to other languages and countries. In the long run, we want to become the global leader in this field. In a month, we’re ready to launch are English version of JouwZoekmachine, after the summer we release our product in a English speaking country and in five years, JouwZoekmachine is available in many countries and languages.”