Microsoft Revamps Bing With More Than Just a New Logo
Microsoft readies an upgraded Bing search experience, including a modern new look, a "Page Zero" function and smarter results.Bing, Microsoft's search engine, is entering its "next phase" and it involves more than sporting a new logo and delivering an updated user interface. A preview is available here. The revamped search engine mirrors Bing's evolution from a search technology to an integral part of Microsoft's new devices-and-services strategy. Lawrence Ripsher, general manager of User Experiences for Bing, noted in a blog post that Bing exists as an "important service layer for Microsoft, and we wanted to create a new brand identity to reflect Bing's company-wide role." His comments not only point to the dwindling likelihood that the software giant will shed Bing, which consistently lags behind Google in the search market and has dragged on the company's finances, but that the search technology will underpin many of the advanced, cloud-enabled intelligent services that are currently being weaved into the broader Windows ecosystem. Last week, Microsoft made headlines when it was revealed that the company is working on a virtual assistant to rival Apple's Siri and Google Now. Code-named "Cortana" after the AI construct that appears in the popular Halo video game series, the Bing-powered technology is expected to arrive in 2014 on Windows Phone.
In June, the company launched the Bing Developer Center to encourage developers to build smart and aware third-party apps based on Bing components like Optical Character Recognition Control, Translator Control and Speech Control. The upcoming Windows 8.1 update will offer deeper Bing integration and a retooled app.