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What did Kenyans Google in 2019?

By George Kiongo | December 18th 2019

Google’s annual ‘Year in Search’ report gives a quick glimpse into what celebrities, trends and events dominated the year.

Internationally, stars on the app TikTok were inescapable in Google’s report, while in Kenya, it was more about news item searches than anything else. Here is the run-down of the top searches in various categories:

How to (tech topic)

‘How to download videos from YouTube’ was the most searched how-to tech topic.

YouTube has captured Kenyan hearts in 2019, and saw content creators make major moves in growing their subscribers and views. Google even honoured several local creators who hit various milestones on YouTube.

Despite the strides, Kenya is still green in terms of wi-fi coverage, and many people still prefer to download videos as opposed to streaming live.

Other trending tech how-to searches included topics like ‘create a website, take care of a phone, hack a wi-fi password, track a phone number, convert PDF to Word, hack a phone, track a lost phone, create a YouTube channel and pay parking in Nairobi’.

Personality searches

Bob Collymore was the top ‘trending personalities in Kenya’ searches. The death of the famed Safaricom CEO took the country by surprise. Kenyans wanted insights into his life, his illness and his untimely demise.

He was followed by Eliud Kipchoge on the list after he broke the sub-two-hour marathon distance during the INEOS 159 Challenge. Other personalities included John Demathew, Joyce Laboso, Ken Okoth, Tob Cohen, Mike Sonko, Jonathan Moi, Ivy Wangechi and Esther Arunga in that order.

 How to (general topic)

Seems most Kenyans don’t know how to file returns using a P9 form. It was the most searched how-to general topic in Kenya. Many others were focused on making money, with searches like ‘How to start a business’ as the third-most-searched topic, followed by ‘How to make money’ and ‘How to be successful in life’ at number six. Users also googled ‘How to apply for a passport, drive a manual car, get a baby boy, check CRB status, check KCPE results 2019 and get pregnant’.

Worldwide, most how-to searches in the general category were around voting.

 Eliud Kipchoge

Eliud Kipchoge was one of the top news searches in three different categories. His legendary run saw him turn up again under ‘Trending News in Kenya’ on Google’s search list.


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