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May 28, 2009

Could Microsoft's "Bing" take share from Google?

Bing (From my Advertising Age Digital Next blog.)

Advertising Age reports that Microsoft will spend $80 million to get us to try its new search engine, to be called "Bing." Could that possibly work? (Well, at least it's not caught in the confusing branding world of "Windows Live" . . .)

Consider.

We all used to use Yahoo or AltaVista until we switched to Google. We stayed with Google because it was better.

Now Google is more than just habit. Google has our IDs, customizes our searches, searches our desktops and our email and delivers neatly integrated Maps, reviews, and video searches. It works. There is every reason to stay and no reason to leave.

But $80 million buys enough impressions to get people to try something new.

For this to make the slightest dent, here's what has to happen.

First, the search has to be better.

Second, the search has to be qualitatively different. Not just better search, but "holy cow this is different." Like it was when you first tried an iPhone, or first saw TiVo. This could be a better way to organize different media. It could mean connecting with social applications. It could mean searches that get better at understanding meaning so we all don't have to think in Boolean logic. Frankly, if I can imagine it, it's not different enough. So it has to blow all of us away.

Third, it has to integrate with everything else, better than Google does.

And finally, it has to work equally well on all browsers, all devices, and all PCs, even Apples and Linux machines.

That's a lot to do. But it could work. All it would take is a level of technology none of us have ever seen before.

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Comments

Chris Ronk

The results seem to be very over-reaching... almost scary.

Oh well, I 'll wait till June 3rd to make my final judgment.

Harsh Agrawal

Another new release from Microsoft, I hope this time they will manage to keep the hype they are creating

Chrystal K.

I'm actually kind of excited to see what transpires with this. I recently read an interview with Qi Lu as well as the info page on the Bing website.

I can't wait to see the outcome...I love innovation!

Dave Culbertson

Let's start the death watch - how many different irrelevant search engines can one company have? Will the same algorithm power msn.com and live.com? If the difference is the search results experience, why add the extra complexity of another name to remember? I view the web analytics for more than dozen clients - MSN/Live always refer about the same # of visits and when combined usually don't even match Yahoo.

Google = search in the mind of the consumer. End of story.

Jamie Favreau

I think Microsoft will be able to try something but you are right they have a long way to go. I am sure they have the power to do something like that. But could they re create the wheel? What is going to make everyone want to switch when Microsoft already knows Google is apart of our lives and the way we do things?

everythingsteve.com

I'm looking forward to seeing what they've got. But here's one critical issue. A lot of folks simply don't like MSFT. And younger peeps? Well, they don't exactly regard MSFT as the vanguard of hip or cool. Perception-wise, these guys have a big hill to climb...not just from the perspective of whether they can deliver search, but whether they can deliver "cool" and "relevant."

programmi gratis

With something like this .... lets see if MS can get some of Googles market. But this Bing seems fantastic!

Cris Rominger

I guess it could be done - they do have the money. But I don't have high hopes.

They have a poor reputation for pushing out technology that's not ready for prime time - and then never really overcoming the issues. That in itself pretty much rules out making it past marker #2 on your list. Integration and cross-platform compatibility (#3 & 4) seem out of the ballpark.

And I'd have to agree with Chrystal, MSN/Live are consistently poor referrers for sites I watch. Also agree with Jamie - MSFT is not synonymous with cool or relevant - and most folks just don't like them.

social network software

It's just so hard to imagine anyone taking on the hurculean Google. Although Yahoo was once King. I love the concept of a decision engine. I almost want to say YES it is possible.

Jonathan Mac
Social Focus VP
Social Networking Software

Dan

Nah, never. I agree with the blog post by taranfx. Bing is microsoft, even their own production boxes don't run windows, they rely on Linux!
The future still holds with google. And where will be Bing? it would be: what bing could do to google

Dan

blog: http://www.taranfx.com/blog/?p=1016
Future of Google: http://www.taranfx.com/blog/?p=1003

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