December 14, 2004 – AOL Search revealed its Top Searches for 2004 list today, with digital cameras coming in as the second most searched gadget behind cell phones. Britney Spears was again named the most searched person of 2004, after taking the title in 2001 and 2002. The most searched term of 2004 was "horoscopes," followed closely by "lyrics," "hairstyles," and "foreclosures." These terms seems to indicate AOL is a different type of search engine than google.com, which compiles weekly lists of popular search terms. Last week, the most searched term was "Anna Benson," a former model and current wife of New York Mets pitcher Kris Benson.
"The most searched for topics online are a way to gauge what Americans are interested in, and what they want to know more about," said Gerry Campbell, vice president and general manager of AOL Search. "Looking at the top year-end search terms from AOL Search gives us a unique view of what was top-of-mind for our members throughout the year."
Apparently, AOL Search users want to know more about cell phones, digital cameras, MP3 players, and PDA devices – in that order. When the term "cell phones" is typed into AOL Search, it brings up 274,667 pages. The same term in Google brings 14,800,000 pages. In the AOL Search engine, "digital cameras" digs up 241,334 pages, while Google finds 25,100,000.
AOL Search processes about 700 million queries per month. In comparison, Google attracts 200 million searches a day or 1.5 billion per month.