We were at a round table conference with the Bing global team recently and the agenda was how Microsoft has a different approach for Bing as it’s not just another search engine and what’s its the strategy for Bing in India.
Since the beginning of Bing, it has been set out to do search differently. Like other search engines, the focus is not just on indexing information or just giving a list of a zillion links when someone searches. The real magic comes when people are able to do things with the information they find and from empowering people to do what they need. Providing clarity and context for what matters. From searching for that perfect answer or mapping the quickest route to finding the latest release to watch on Xbox, Bing provides what you need in the way you need it. Look at a few screenshots below and experience how visually appealing Bing is compared to the other search engines –
The best part about Bing is that it indexes both the physical and digital world by trying to understand the digital universe from topical and social sources to geo-spatial (maps and understanding of place). For example each of the image above has geo-spatial link to it, all images have an ‘Info’ button and when it’s clicked you get all the information about the background image being used.
And with the Windows 8.1, Bing powers a new search experience and delivers new and updated Bing Apps. The new search in Windows 8.1 is a faster way to find what you need no matter where it lives – whether it’s a document on your PC, a photo album in the cloud, an app, or a website. Bing Apps help you discover interesting new content on the topics you care about most. The partner-centric approach has been used since the very beginning; it’s what helped define the success in the personal computing era, and it’s what differentiates Bing in today’s devices and services era. Unlike many of the competitors, Bing doesn’t try to own everything, or lock people out. Bing may have all the have all the answers, but still continues to work with hundreds of partners around the globe who’ve developed successful businesses by taking advantage of the tools and open platforms provided by us.
For the same, our core strategy in India is to have the best of partners to maximise the search experience a user gets each and every time he searches something on Bing. Example: You search for a restaurant on Bing, in any other search engine you would be flooded with results both sponsored and generic. But in Bing you not only get the results but also an option to book a table of the same restaurant without leaving the Bing search result page. This experience is powered by Bing partner – ‘Book Your Table’. Imagine the same experience when you have to book a hotel, a movie ticket or even when you are checking for a simple recipe.
Let’s see some screenshots to better understand, how dynamic and different Bing is:
Not only is it limited to the web interface, Windows 8 or a WP phone. As India is a huge market for smartphone users and the Nokia Asha series has been a stepping stone for many consumers who are switching from feature phones to smartphones. With Bing customized for Nokia Asha, first time users get a variety of features in addition to opening up access to the internet and search on their phones. This will help make the move to smartphones seamless and enriching. This meeting was a clear indication on how Microsoft is focussing on India, its biggest market outside the US. The team admitted that the journey from Redmond to Rajinder Nagar won’t be easy but they are up for it. We wish MS all the best and look forward to best search experience it endeavours to offer its users.
All the Apple iPhone and iPad users out there, your beloved ‘Siri’ is also powered by Bing 😉