Microsoft’s new search engine Bing is now live for users to test drive. Though labeled a “preview”, the search site is fully functional and all live.com search requests are being re-directed to Bing. Using Bing is not nearly as bad as saying its name. The interface is clean, search options are easily accessible and the search results appear on point. Video search gets a nice improvement as well — place your mouse cursor over a video search result and Bing will play back the video in thumbnail mode within the search results page. Just a word of caution about those videos. Don’t turn the safe search option off at work as you may get an unintended eyeful that is very much nsfw. In the end, Bing is pretty and seemingly works well but will this new contender have the power to take even a small bite out of Google’s domination? Only time and an $80 million ad campaign will tell.
Now, we’ll preface this by saying that it is absolutely, positively, 100% impossible to draw any real conclusions about a product like a search engine without a fair amount of hands-on time. After viewing this preview video, we can also absolutely, positively, 100% say that the name “Bing” sounds more ridiculous each and every time it is uttered. Seriously, it’s a really bad name — to quote one of our commenters:
Eh, I dunno. Can you imagine someone saying “Gee, I wonder if I can find a picture of a kitten online?” – “Sure you can, why don’t you Bing it?”
Doesn’t quite work…
As trivial as it may seem, Google is such a powerful brand that it’s now as much a verb as it is a noun. Microsoft’s Bing… Will never be a verb. It does however, appear to be a powerful amalgamation of a variety of existing services. Does it have that x-factor that will help catapult it into significance? Maybe not from what we’ve seen in this video preview so far but only time will tell. One thing is certain: an $80 million launch campaign will give Bing a better chance to compete than any comparable search engine has had before it. Hit the read link for the video and let us know what you think.
It’s been a while since rumblings of Kumo, Microsoft’s codename for its new searching engine offering, made the rounds. From the looks of things, that’s about to change… Big time. Redmond is said to be preparing to launch Kumo — with the final name “Bing” — alongside a massive $80 million advertising push that will aim to convince people search is broken and Microsoft has fixed it. It’s a tough sell, no question. Microsoft’s latest Laptop Hunters ad run has been quite the success of course, but there is a pretty massive difference here: Laptop Hunters addresses personal computers, where Microsoft is already the undisputed heavyweight champ with a shade under 90 percent of the market. Bing is a search engine and Microsoft’s search products currently combine to hold just over 8 percent of the market. Bing needs to build a user base, not keep one. So the task where advertising is concerned is a much different one, but the market could be ready for a true contender. According to Microsoft’s research where search is concerned, 42 percent of searches require refinement and 25 percent of clicks are the back button. As dominant as Google is, there still may be plenty of room for improvement in terms of efficiency.