Google tops Microsoft on brand

Google has become the UK's top "superbrand" for the first time, knocking Microsoft off the top spot, according to a new YouGov study.

The search engine, which came third in last year's poll, beat out 500 other companies including the BBC, Microsoft, Apple and British Airways to take the honour - which recognises Google as the most recognisable and valuable brand in the UK.

Microsoft slipped into second place behind its rival, followed by Mercedes-Benz and the BBC which ranked fourth.

Despite Microsoft's fall, the company still maintains a healthy dominion over Apple in the public consciousness, with the iPhone maker missing the top 10 and entering in eleventh place.

"Lifestyle brands, particularly those in the technology sector, have considerably more sway with the public than everyday staples such as the supermarkets, which now seem further than ever from the affections of the British people," said Stephen Cheliotis, chairman of the Superbrands Council which commissioned the research.

"The results are also a further sign that Google is continuing its dominance in the UK. It is clear that Google is the brand that people value at work and in their personal lives."

The study took in 1,000 brands and rated them on quality, reliability and distinctiveness.