Alphabet-owned Google Inc has been enjoying absolute dominance or one could even say an almost monopoly status when it comes to the internet search for years now. However, that might just not be the case anymore as the tech giants Apple and Microsoft are dialling up the heat as of late.
A few days ago, we reported how many developers were observing Apple’s web crawlers aggressively crawling their websites every single.
This quickly led to the most obvious speculation – Is Apple secretly planning to go to war with the biggest search giant Google by creating one of their own?
Well, the answer to that might not be in the clear as of now, but as for Microsoft, we can concretely state that they are definitely looking forward to increasing their footprint in search market space.
The developer community has noticed that the Redmont based software giant is working towards rebranding its search engine Bing.
Even though there has not been any official announcement of any kind from Microsoft about the larger strategy at play, many have started observing the old Bing being replaced by a newer one which says ‘Microsoft Bing’ in a new style.
The tech giant has updated the Outlook app on the Android platform to include a nifty Bing search integration as well. It can be accessed via the long-press menu, after which users can quickly perform a bing search using when selecting text.
New Microsoft Bing: Any Threat To Google?
Bing has literally been surviving on the leftovers from Google’s dominance. As of October 2020, Google is enjoying a 88.01% share in the desktop search engine market, while Bing has only 6.21% share.
Since its inception in the year 1998, Google has undergone way too many updates and refinement in its algorithm to provide its users with the most up to date and relevant results.
Google’s strategy to stay afoot in the search space is quite simple. They continually upgrade their search functionality every single day to provide a seamless search experience. This, in turn, has helped them retain most of the internet users all over the world to date.
Other than that, Google’s ability to deliver extremely personalized results as well as advertisements, based on features such as browsing history and location, also enhances its value.
As for Bing, its current brand image is quite poor. Many simply refer to as the default search engine for Windows, and not much else.
Microsoft has a really bad track record when it comes to consumer-facing businesses and Bing is one of its prime examples why.
In order to increase traction on their search engine, they started to force enterprises and businesses with Office 365 Pro Plus to use Bing. The obvious strategy behind is to increase the overall share and usage of the search engine, however, they overlooked a very important part of it. Consumers don’t want to have their hands forced!
Bing had some major problems which wouldn’t let users want to stick to it even if they wanted to. In January 2019, a media report highlighted how the Microsoft owned search engine was displaying really problematic search results. It was spewing out pornography and other derogatory content to its users.
A year before that, another report revealed how Bing’s image results were borderline racist particularly when it came to searches regarding those of the Islamic and Jewish faiths. The same report also threw light on the fact that the search engine was suggesting some conspiracy theory websites as well when users searched for figures like former First Lady Michelle Obama.
Now, while it is true that these issues have all been addressed, but that doesn’t exempt Bing from having the reputation of being a bad search engine. This again brings us another obvious question – Why would someone even consider using it when there exists a way better product in the same space?
Microsoft, in the revenue results of the fourth fiscal quarter 2020 said that their search advertising revenue has decreased by 18% or $353 million from the year-ago quarter. Again, no surprises there because advertisers or marketers, at the end of the day, will go where the majority of attention is – Google.
Thus, now, it remains to be seen, what can the tech giant do differently or better in order to bite off a larger piece of the pie that’s currently sitting in Google’s oven!
As Microsoft has also re-branded Office 365 as Microsoft 365 and Windows Defender to Microsoft Defender, it would be interesting to find what’s Microsoft up to. Are these changes just the tip of the iceberg or these developments must not be considered more than as a part of some rebranding efforts? We are yet to be made known.
Do you think that Microsoft Bing can ever bounce back? Do let us know your views in the comnet section below.