Technology

Google: Euro 2016, Pokemon and Bowie lead UK search queries

Pokemon Go Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Pokemon Go topped several of Google's lists of the year

Google has revealed that "Euro 2016" was its UK search engine's top trending term of the year.

The football championship was followed by the game Pokemon Go, the late singer David Bowie and US President-elect Donald Trump in its rankings.

Google's list is based on words and phrases that stand out from the norm to get round the fact that an unfiltered version would be little changed from one year to the next.

The top global term was Pokemon Go.

Perhaps surprisingly, the death of Prince ensured the singer was more "googled" by UK users than either Brexit or EU referendum - the two phrases are grouped together in the firm's rankings.


Image copyright Getty/AP/BBC

Google UK top trending searches of 2016:

  1. Euro 2016
  2. Pokemon Go
  3. David Bowie
  4. Donald Trump
  5. Prince
  6. EU referendum/Brexit
  7. Alan Rickman
  8. Olympics
  9. US election
  10. Deadpool

Google global trending searches of 2016:

  1. Pokemon Go
  2. iPhone 7
  3. Donald Trump
  4. Prince
  5. Powerball
  6. David Bowie
  7. Deadpool
  8. Olympics
  9. Slither.io
  10. Suicide Squad

The US firm has also analysed how its search tools are used to rank UK queries by topic, giving further insight into users' fads and preoccupations over the past 12 months.

Pikachu and his fellow monsters were obviously on a lot of minds because "How to play Pokemon Go?" was not only the most popular "How to...?" question, but "What is Pokemon Go?" was also the most popular "What is...?" entry too.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Brits wanted to know more about US TV star Meghan Markle after details of her relationship with Prince Harry emerged

Prince Harry's girlfriend Meghan Markle may have only hit the headlines in late October - when their relationship was still a rumour - but she managed to become the UK's most searched for "famous woman".

Her male equivalent was Conor McGregor, the Ultimate Fighting Championship lightweight champion.

Deadpool beat other comic book movies including Suicide Squad, Batman v Superman and Captain America: Civil War to become the most searched for movie.

And Strictly Come Dancing edged out Celebrity Big Brother in the TV stakes.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Strictly Come Dancing went from third spot in the TV rankings in 2015 to first place this year

In tech, Apple's iPhone topped the list of the most searched devices, beating Samsung's Galaxy S7 and Google's own Pixel handsets. The Sky Q set-top box was the most popular non-smartphone product.

Some of the queries might require additional context to make sense to many readers:

  • "What is a Balayage?" was the second most popular query about hair. It refers to a technique in which the strands are coloured so that they become lighter the closer they get to the ends
  • "Where is the A Word filmed?" was the third most entered "Where is...?" question. It refers to a BBC TV drama series about a young boy with autism. The answer is the Lake District
  • "What is the mountain of butterflies?" was the 10th most queried "What is...?" term. It refers to the place where North American monarch butterflies base themselves in the winter. The query was prompted by Google promoting a doodle about the discovery of the location on its homepage. The answer is the Sierra Madre Mountains, in eastern Mexico
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Media captionGoogle Trends list

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