Twitter, Bing Refresh Tweet Integration Deal

Microsoft Bing and Twitter renewed their real-time search agreement, the companies confirmed. They also alluded to "bigger and better things" in the future.

Twitter and Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) search engine found a way to do what Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Twitter could not, agreeing to renew their deal to integrate tweets in Bing's search engine.

A Twitter spokesperson couched the news via a faux tweet exchange between Twitter and Bing on Storify, which included this line: "Search w/o Twitter = old news. You & @MSN are amazing at using Tweets to make search better & help people stay in the know." The companies also pledged to "do bigger and better things."

The Twitter spokesperson later confirmed the deal, whose duration has not been revealed, for eWEEK Sept. 6 but did not disclose terms of the deal. Microsoft also confirmed the deal for eWEEK but declined to divulge its terms.

At the Web 2.0 Summit in October 2009, Bing and Twitter two years ago unveiled a deal in which the young search engine agreed to index Twitter's tweets in its search engine results pages.

The move gave Twitter prominent placement on its own page in one of the leading search engines, while Bing got to enjoy traffic spikes from people searching for hot, breaking news and trends.

The Twitter firehose is now integrated in Bing's Social search Website, which includes status updates from Facebook.

Twitter enjoyed a similar arrangement with Google -- also announced at that Web 2.0 Summit -- until July, when they're deal expired and the companies could not agree on new terms. Google had created its own real-time search index with Twitter, MySpace, Facebook, Quora and other sources.

"Since October of 2009, we have had an agreement with Twitter to include their updates in our search results through a special feed, and that agreement expired on July 2," Google said at the time. "While we will not have access to this special feed from Twitter, information on Twitter that's publicly available to our crawlers will still be searchable and discoverable on Google."

Google Fellow Amit Singhal, who leads the company's search efforts, said real-time search could return with status updates from the new Google+ social network.

It is believed, though never confirmed, that Google and Bing each paid around $30 million for access to Twitter's firehose data feed, through which hundreds of millions of tweets are funneled each day.