Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters

Priya Prakash Varrier, Priyanka Chopra, Sapna Choudhary among 2018’s most Googled personalities

Interestingly, football topped cricket in the overall Google search listing, with queries around FIFA World Cup surpassing those around the cricketing action during the IPL season

New Delhi: Malayalam actor Priya Prakash Varrier, actor Priyanka Chopra and her spouse Nick Jonas were among the most searched personalities featured in Google India’s ‘Year in Search’ results released by the search engine on Wednesday, recapping the top search trends of 2018 in India. These are based on search terms that had the highest spike this year as compared to the previous year.

Varrier, who topped the list for her ‘wink’ that went viral and turned her into an overnight sensation, was followed by Jonas, American singer and songwriter who married to Priyanka Chopra in December. Chopra came in at fourth place behind Haryanvi dancer and singer Sapna Choudhary. The interest in royal weddings spiked as American actor turned Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle figured in the list of most-searched-for personalities.

However, it was sports and entertainment that dominated the top trending charts with queries around FIFA World Cup 2018 leading the pack followed by Indian Premier League (IPL). Interestingly, football swept cricket in the overall search listing, with queries around Football World Cup topping those around the cricketing action during the IPL season.

During Karnataka’s state elections, queries around Karnataka elections soared to mark its presence among the top trending queries, while Big Boss turned out to be the top choice when it came to entertainment this year, surpassing queries related to the Rajinikanth/Akshay Kumar blockbuster Robot 2.0.

On the cinema front, the Bollywood blockbusters overshadowed Hollywood in the search lists, with Robot 2.0 taking the top spot, followed by action thriller and Bollywood blockbusters Baaghi 2 and Race 3. The three Hollywood entries in the list happened to be from Marvel Studios: Avengers: Infinity War, Black Panther, and Deadpool 2.

The songs that ruled the roost included Neha Kakkar’s Dilbar Dilbar, Arijit Singh’s Tera Fitoor and Atif Aslam’s Dekhte Dekhte from Bollywood. Interestingly, the lone English entrant was the ever-popular Latin hit song Despacito, which also happened to make it to the Year in Search list last year!

A wide range of topics this year reflected the zeitgeist of Search users in India. Celebrity weddings made big waves this year as fans scoured the web in search for the latest buzz on their favorite celeb marriages. The three weddings that figured prominently included Priyanka Chopra/Nick Jonas, Deepika Padukone/Ranveer Kapoor, and Sonam Kapoor/Anand Ahuja. Other news events that grabbed attention included queries around the world’s largest statue, the Statue of Unity, unveiled in Gujarat earlier this year. Rounding off the list was a span of news topics including the striking down of Section 377, the union budget, bitcoin, as well as the Nipah virus.

Among the most interesting search terms were those centered around ‘How to..’, and ‘What is…’, which saw a wide variety of questions spanning from ‘How to link Aadhar with Mobile number’ ‘How to invest in bitcoin’ to ‘What is the kiki challenge’, and ‘What is me too campaign.’ The list of ‘Near me…’ queries revolved around mobile stores, supermarkets, gas stations, and cash points, with jobs near me also figuring in the list.

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