After 10 years in Ireland, Google takes us on a trip down search memory lane

16 Sep 2013

Still from 'Google 10 Years in Ireland' by Google Ireland on YouTube

Google has been working out of its EMEA HQ in Ireland since 2003 and, to mark a decade on its shores, the international search giant has created a ‘birthday’ webpage documenting 10 years of Irish search results.

Google recently marked its 10th birthday in Ireland with the opening of The Foundry, its new digital innovation centre in Dublin’s docklands. It has also created a special webpage looking back over 10 years of search in Ireland.

A video produced for the occasion reflects on Google in Ireland, depicting the fruits of the country through Google products, from Maps, Image Search and Translate to YouTube, Google+ and Google Play. There’s even an appearance from Irish band Delorentos and a shout-out to Father Jack, Roddy Doyle and Aran jumpers.

Google currently employs 2,000 people in Ireland – and it looks like it tried to fit them all into the video – and the company looks forward to many more years in the country.


A decade of Irish search

On the birthday site, users can select a year and look at what queries were most searched for and who or what was trending in Ireland at that time. There’s also a ‘What is..?’ chart listing the questions plaguing us in that period.

Ireland has come a long way since 2004 when all of its ‘What is…?’ queries focused on tech terms, apart from No 8: ‘What is love?’.

Search trends in Ireland 2004 - Google

Search trends in Ireland in 2004. Source: Google

For two years in a row (2008 and 2009), Ireland was persistently asking ‘what is 3G?’, while the chief question of 2009 was ‘what is NAMA?’.

Major sporting events are consistently top of the Irish search agenda, with ‘Athens 2004’, ‘Euro 2004’, ‘Euro 2012’ and ‘Katie Taylor’ reaching the top 10 in relevant years, though in 2010 ‘Chatroulette’ saw more searches than ‘World Cup 2010’.

As if tracking trends in social media, 2006’s top search term was ‘Bebo’, in 2007 it was ‘YouTube’ and in 2008 ‘Facebook’ took the lead.

With searches tracked to August this year, we’ve all become financially conscious in 2013 with ‘Ryanair’ and ‘’ and topping the search charts. Ireland’s Google users are still curious about new technology, with ‘what is Snapchat?’ the top query, followed by ‘what is twerking?’ at No 4 and ‘what is austerity?’ at No 7.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.