An Australian court on Tuesday ruled that Google engaged in “misleading and deceptive” advertising practices, Reuters reported. The court said that between March 2006 and July 2007, Google published search results for queries related to Honda Australia with paid advertisements for Honda competitor CarSales. The advertisements led users to believes that CarSales was linked to Honda Australia. The search giant argued that it was not responsible for misleading search results since it was merely a conduit for advertisers. The court disagreed, however, and ordered Google to set up a compliance program that will ensure paid advertisements will not mislead consumers. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission praised the ruling, saying that Google and other Internet search engines will now be held responsible for “deceptive paid search results.” More →
Google is reportedly in the process of giving its Web-search formula a major makeover in an attempt to fix its shortcomings and maintain its dominance in the search market. In the coming months, the company is looking to use “semantic search” to analyze words and phrases and present more facts and direct answers to questions at the top of each results page. The changes are among the company’s biggest and could affect millions of websites that rely on Google’s current page-ranking results, The Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday. A top Google search executive said that semantic search will allow the company to better match queries from a database containing hundreds of millions of “entities” — such as people, places and things — that the company has quietly built up over the past two years. For example, people who search for “Lake Tahoe” with semantic search will see “attributes” of the lake, such as its location, altitude and average temperature or salt content, while those who searched for it today would only get links. More →
Co-founder and former CEO Jerry Yang has resigned from all of his positions with Yahoo, the company announced in a press release on Tuesday. Yang co-founded Yahoo in 1995 with David Filo and served as a member of the Board of Directors since March 1995. Yang was also the company’s CEO from June 2007 to January 2009, until he was replaced by Carol Bartz. “My time at Yahoo!, from its founding to the present, has encompassed some of the most exciting and rewarding experiences of my life,” said Yang in a statement. “However, the time has come for me to pursue other interests outside of Yahoo! As I leave the company I co-founded nearly 17 years ago, I am enthusiastic about the appointment of Scott Thompson as Chief Executive Officer and his ability, along with the entire Yahoo! leadership team, to guide Yahoo! into an exciting and successful future.” Yahoo chairman Roy Bostock praised Yang, calling him both a visionary and pioneer. “We appreciate Jerry’s comments and share his enthusiasm for the company’s prospects. With Scott Thompson leading an outstanding team of Yahoos to deliver innovative products and an engaging customer experience, Yahoo!’s future is bright,” said Bostock. Yahoo’s press release follows below. More →
Microsoft has lost $5.5 billion, an average drain of $1 billion per quarter, on Bing since it introduced the search engine in 2009, CNNMoney reported on Wednesday. Despite the losses, Microsoft’s Bing reached a 30% share of the U.S. search engine market in April of this year, slowly narrowing the gap with Google, although comScore’s figures pin the search engine’s share at just 14.7%. Despite the constant drain, Microsoft still has a plan for Bing. During the company’s financial analyst meeting in California recently, Microsoft’s president of online services Qi Lu said his company hopes to use Bing to “reorganize the web” to “change the game fundamentally” instead of taking on Google in a head-to-head dogfight. Read on for more. More →
Microsoft has struck a deal to provide English search results in Baidu, China’s most popular search engine. According to The Wall Street Journal, Microsoft anticipates that the Bing-labeled English search results will help expand its Bing brand in China. Baidu also hopes that the partnership will help its efforts to expand its search engine to the global market. Chinese users typically use Google for English search results, however, the Chinese government has blocked that search engine — and other Google services, such as the newly launched Google+ — from time to time. Baidu will begin implementing Bing results later this year, although neither company provided an exact date as to when that functionality would be added.
1PlusV, a French search company, has filed a lawsuit against Google asking for 295 million euros ($421 million). “Between 2007 and 2010, no less than 30 vertical search engines created by 1plusV were black-listed, some of which showed significant business potential,” the company said in its lawsuit. According to Reuters, 1PlusV plans to file the official complaint on Tuesday or Wednesday with the Paris commercial court. Google has been taking a lot of legal heat recently. In the United States, Google recently addressed the U.S. Federal Trade Commission’s investigation into its business practices, and it has also faced a similar lawsuit in Europe. In March, Microsoft announced that it was filing a complaint against Google with the European Trade Commission. More →
Google is said to be testing its new Google Music service internally, according to sources speaking to CNET. Google had originally planned to make an announcement during the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas earlier this month, but it apparently still needs to iron out some of the details with the four major record labels. It is expected that Google Music will be a cloud-based system where users can stream, buy, and store music online for access from their Android smartphones or tablets, as well as from their computers. It’s still unclear what the pricing structure will be like, but we’re definitely hyped for this to launch. More →
We knew that Bing was the default search engine for Windows Phone 7 handsets, but earlier information about the mobile OS suggested that carriers and OEM’s could change the search engine as part of the allowed customizations. Apparently that information, which was based upon leaked documents, is now incorrect. In a recent interview with Pocket-Lint, Greg Sullivan, senior product manager for Microsoft, confirmed that Bing is the one and the only search engine for Windows Phone 7 handsets. Sullivan stated that “the search engine has been heavily integrated into the OS, so it would be hard to offer an alternative.” While the default search engine for the device can not be changed, OEMs, carriers, and individuals can presumably add a second search engine via a downloadable application or possibly within the Hub interface. Anyone turned off by this restriction or is it a non-issue? More →
Google is going to step into the online music business according to The Wall Street Journal, which cites to sources familiar with the matter. The search giant is reportedly in talks with the music industry to offer a music download service that will leverage Google’s position as the top search engine worldwide. The service will be available both on the web for all platforms and on Android handsets. Look for the music search and download service to launch later this year with an add-on subscription option slated for early 2011. With books, tv, and now music, Google is making a big play for a bigger slice of entertainment revenue, no? More →
Surely you don’t think RIM has that kind of control over their own smartphones (they bend over backwards for their carrier partners). That leaves us to assume that Verizon Wireless has struck a deal with Microsoft’s Bing search engine to be the search engine of choice on their BlackBerry products. That’s fine and dandy (get that money, boo boo), but what’s really upsetting to most users is that there isn’t an option to change to another provider. No, we’re not kidding, you can not switch to Google or Wikipedia like you used to be able to.
We’ve reached out to Verizon and are waiting to hear back. In the meantime, what do you guys think?
UPDATE: Verizon Wireless told us, “The default to our BlackBerry devices is now bing!” and that if you’d like to use another search provider, you can “go to web – bookmark, make favorite, download. Also – you can to Appworld and download Google quicksearch client for free and move it from the Downloads folder to have a link on the home screen.”
We have some news coming out of the world of those new-fangled “search engines” that are so popular with the kids; it looks like Microsoft’s re-branded search product’s market share is creeping up on double digits in the U.S., currently sitting at 9.9% for September of 2009. Bing’s share of internet spelunking is up 1.4% for the year and 0.5% in September alone, compare that with -3% on the year for Yahoo! and +2.4% for Google. Not too shabby, considering bing.com was just launched on May 28th of this year. Here at BGR we are pretty loyal Googler’s, what about you? Any die hard, uh, Binger’s out there? More →
We’re not sure if Microsoft plans to get as deep into the mobile website business as Google but as of yesterday, the company’s new Bing mobile site is alive and ready for action. Bing, for those who took a long weekend, is Microsoft’s new search engine; a reincarnation of Microsoft Live Search that is infinitely more usable. Since its launch yesterday in preview form, Bing has definitely received a fair amount of acclaim from around the blogosphere and preliminary user feedback is pretty positive as well. In the short time we’ve tested the site so far, Bing mobile is no different. The site is nice and spry, results pages are laid out well with web, image, news and local breakdowns one click away, and Bing will format linked pages for your phone if you so choose — just like Google. Truth be told, we like Microsoft’s mobile formatting much, much better than Google’s so far. If you’re looking for a great new mobile search option, definitely check out m.bing.com from your handset.
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.