Last week Microsoft unveiled their answer to Google, Bing. It’s not being touted as a search engine, but rather a “decision engine”.

Microsoft identified three design goals to guide the development of Bing: deliver great results; deliver a more organised experience; and simplify tasks and provide insight, leading to faster, more confident decisions.

The new service is being promoted as being built to go beyond today’s search experience, including deep innovation on core search areas including entity extraction and expansion, query intent recognition and document summarisation technology as well as a new user experience model that dynamically adapts to the type of query to provide relevant and intuitive decision-making tools.

The Bing Approach (as stated by Microsoft):

  1. A Decision Engine for the Way You Search- Terming it as a ‘Decision Engine’, Microsoft noted the new search service would help customers to make better decisions.
  2. Bing would initially focus on four key areas: “making a purchase decision, planning a trip, researching a health condition or finding a local business”.
  3. Reducing the number of wasted clicks (which currently account for 24 percent of clicks)
  4. Adding structure to the current chaos of search results
  5. Finding Instant Answers quickly and with only a single click
  6. Providing organised access to user and expert opinions about products and local businesses

Bing Top Features

  1. Auto-Suggest. Offers alternatives for search queries
  2. Instant Answers. Serves up information within search results, eliminating the need to click on anything
  3. Best Match. Provides links and information for definitive sites
  4. Related Searches. Points to deeper information available with one click
  5. Links. Enables direct access to relevant content within a site
  6. Quick View. Summarises a Web site at a glance, before clicking through to the site
  7. Smart Video Preview. Previews a 30-second clip of videos simply by scrolling onto them
  8. Infinite Scroll. Provides browsed image results without clicking to a new page
  9. Quick Tabs. Tailors search results with one click

Aesthetically, Bing’s home page has been called “prettier” than Google’s, often featuring landscapes and other stunning photography, and is set to change daily.

According to Microsoft, Bing isn’t expected to be a “Google killer,” but merely a start to more improvements on their search engine that are to come; so if it doesn’t quite tickle your fancy yet, check back again soon.

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