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Microsoft Replaces Live Search With 'Bing'

Gordon Kelly

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Microsoft Replaces Live Search With 'Bing'

It's catch up time...

Microsoft is getting serious again on search. In an effort to close the gap on runaway leader Google the Redmond giant has announced 'Bing' - a replacement for the Live Search brand.

Rolled out as a beta product from 3 June, Microsoft hopes Bing will reboot its current offering with a new intuitive layout and more relevant information including the likes of 'Best Match' (which identifies the best result for popular queries) and 'Instant Answers' (quick results in the body of the first search results page).

On top of this we learn the rather loose information that there will be "more functionality in key consumer areas including shopping, local search and travel leading to faster, more informed decisions." Not overly enlightening at this point. Lastly a more dynamic homepage will change daily to reflect the location and news agenda. From here Microsoft will roll out incremental improvements as the year goes on. Yes, it does all sound rather Google.

"Bing is being built in the UK over the next six to twelve months based on consumer insights and is designed to help people find the shortest distance from their initial Search query to the point of making an informed decision," said Microsoft UK Search Lead Paul Stoddart.

I did a little chasing for more and learnt on the mobile side, the service will also be rebranded to Bing over time with any links to Live Search being automatically redirected. This will also take place within the same timescale as the main service.

As for the name - something of a talking point already, Microsoft explained to me:

"We were looking for a name that was short, easy to say and spell, and would be globally appropriate. In addition, we were looking for names that carried inherent qualities that spoke to the search category itself. Our research around Bing showed that it demonstrated 'fast', 'easy' and 'delight'—all qualities that mapped very naturally to the search experience. It was also seen as the friendliest and most approachable name option."

A bit fluffy yes, but you can also see that Microsoft was looking for a term that could be turned into a verb, much as Google has done. In a few years will we say "I'm just going to Bing it"? Personally, it'll take a lot for me just to break The Sopranos connection...

Update: Microsoft has now posted a video of Bing in action (yep, it's looking impressive - at least in theory):

In related news Microsoft has extended the expiration date for the Windows 7 beta that was launched in January. Despite the Release Candidate now being available and going great guns Microsoft has told beta version users that it will now start automatically shutting down every two hours from 1 July, not 1 June.

Link:

Bing

TheLostSwede

May 29, 2009, 7:23 pm

So how do you pronounce that, is it like bing, or BING! or Biiiing!


Hopefully it'll teach Google to stop putting paid for content first, as it's getting a bit too much paid for content on Google...

Xiphias

May 29, 2009, 8:17 pm

So on one hand we've got a name from a childrens' TV show, on the other we've got the scientific name for 10^100. I know which one I'd be more inclined to try first if I'm looking for knowledge.

Ben

May 29, 2009, 8:59 pm

Looks more credible than Live, at least.

TheOpsMgr

May 29, 2009, 9:53 pm

I assumed it was named after the Stanley Bing column in Fortune mag...

Kaplan

May 29, 2009, 10:28 pm

"We were looking for a name that was short, easy to say and spell, and would be globally appropriate. In addition, we were looking for names that carried inherent qualities that spoke to the search category itself. Our research around Bing showed that it demonstrated 'fast', 'easy' and 'delight'&#8212all qualities that mapped very naturally to the search experience. It was also seen as the friendliest and most approachable name option."





Microsoft should spend less time branding their products and more time trying to make products that are actually good

Gdub

May 30, 2009, 12:05 am

@Xiphias - Google is not 10^100. Googol is 10^100. So in your search for knowledge you'd be more inclined to use the search engine from the guys that can't spell.






basicasic

May 30, 2009, 1:21 am

"We were looking for a name that was short, easy to say and spell, and would be globally appropriate."





Well they should have called it 'dung' then ...... because it'll be a load of <enter appropriate word here>

Ohmz

May 30, 2009, 1:48 am

"We were looking for a name that was short, easy to say and spell, and would be globally appropriate."





SNAP! I GOT IT! Google! Damnit! Well "Bing" it is.

BobaFett

May 30, 2009, 3:17 am

@Gdub: Given the various pronunciations of 'googol' it was a fortuitous spelling mistake that left them with a name that has only one pronunciation and is easy to spell correctly. That's pretty much the criteria for any good domain name. Whereas "cuil.com" must be the stupidest choice I've ever come across - pronounced 'cool' and nobody, except maybe the Irish, can spell it without someone else telling them. They might just as well have called it C-U-I-L.

jingyeow

May 30, 2009, 4:14 am

My guess is that they were thinking of the sound that you hear when you come up with an idea or realisation "ding" lightbulb! But there are two many ways to make fun of that word, ding a ling :) so they ended up with bing :)

rav

May 30, 2009, 1:28 pm

looks really good but rubbish name. liked kumo much more.

hankb6d

May 30, 2009, 11:59 pm

Bong it is than.

mjaffk

May 31, 2009, 6:34 pm

yeah, 'kumo' is much better. especially for me as i'm a japanese learner.

John 21

June 1, 2009, 2:41 am

I guess they were watching friends when they named this.


I, for one, would be proud to use Chandler's search engine!

deecee

June 1, 2009, 5:27 pm

Bing is now 'Live' so to speak and it's pretty good.

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