Canonical drops Yahoo for Ubuntu 10.04

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Google returns as Ubuntu's default search provider, after Canonical drops Yahoo deal

Ubuntu has dropped Yahoo as the default search provider within Firefox, just three months after the switch was initially announced.

Back in January, Yahoo signed a deal with Canonical - the commercial sponsor of Ubuntu - to replace Google as the default search provider on the version of Firefox that ships with the open-source OS.

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The change was in place for the Release Candidate of Ubuntu 10.04, and at the time Rick Spencer, engineering manager for the Ubuntu Desktop Team, claimed the revenue sharing deal would "help Canonical to provide developers and resources to continue the open development of Ubuntu and the Ubuntu Platform".

However, Spencer has announced that Canonical has now backtracked on those plans and will reinstate Google as the default search provider. "I have asked the Ubuntu Desktop team to change the default back to Google as soon as reasonably possible, but certainly by final freeze on 15 April."

Spencer did not cite any specific reasons for making the switch, but claimed the team had considered factors such as "user experience, user preferences, and costs and benefits for Ubuntu and the browsers and other projects that make up Ubuntu".

"It was not our intention to flap between providers, but the underlying circumstances can change unpredictably," he concluded.

Canonical has refused to comment beyond the official announcement.

The announcement comes as former Canonical chief executive reveals that Ubuntu 10.10 will be called Maverick Meerkat.

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