Search engine marketing firm NetCallidus argues that the five-year development plan for Quaero is "ridiculous" because internet technology will have significantly changed by 2013.
The French and German governments launched Quaero (Latin for 'I search') in 2006. France originally set up the Agency for Industrial Innovation to help develop the software, but Germany later pulled out of the project.
Quaero has already been awarded £75m by the French government to work on its multimedia search technology.
The project comprises 23 companies working together, and the founders have recently declared that Quaero is not a search engine but rather a research co-operative looking into search technology that other companies will be able to use.
Mark Furber, managing director of NetCallidus, said: "Look back five years at the way the internet was in 2003 and how the technology has evolved.
"The pace of change is getting faster, forcing internet companies to work harder to keep up. A publicly funded project like this has no chance of overtaking Google, even if that money was spent on development over one year and not five."
Furber believes that the only way to create a viable European rival to Google is to use the money to fund research at one of its existing major rivals, such as Yahoo.
Figures show that all Google sites have a total of 56.5 per cent market share for worldwide internet search. Yahoo has just 23.3 per cent.
Quaero project branded 'ridiculous'
By Clement James on Apr 25, 2008 12:58PM