Government // Mobile & Wireless
News
11/3/2011
12:49 PM
50%
50%

iPhone, Android Get Bing Search First

Microsoft's surprising move means Apple and Google get Bing apps before Windows Phone 7.

10 Top iOS 5 Apps
10 Top iOS 5 Apps
(click image for larger view and for slideshow)
Microsoft said it has released an app that allows users of Apple and Android-based mobile devices to access its Bing search engine, a move that could expose Redmond's search technology to a wider audience but also raises questions about the company's confidence in its own platforms.

Microsoft's Bing for Mobile app comes in versions geared for Apple iOS devices, including the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch, and for Google Android-based phones and tablets.

Significantly, the app is built on HTML5, rather than Microsoft's own Silverlight multimedia display technology, despite the fact that Silverlight will run on iOS and Android. Santana Basu, product manager for Bing Mobile, said Microsoft opted for HTML5 in order to deliver an experience that combines the best of both the browser and apps worlds.

"Using HTML5, our goal is to build a mobile experience that leverages the unique capabilities of the different platforms, including camera support and voice search, while making the functions the apps can provide consistent across the platforms and--in the future--callable by engines to help people get from search to doing," said Basu, in a blog post.

[ Want the latest on Windows Phone? Read Windows Phone Mango Goes Mainstream. ]

In other words, purpose-built apps for mobile devices need to be able to talk to the wider Web, and Microsoft sees HTML5 as a means to do that. But Microsoft's increasing focus on HTML5, while welcomed by standards proponents, raises questions about its commitment to Silverlight.

Most notably, the company has said very little about Silverlight support in relation to Windows 8.

Former Microsoft Rich Platforms product manager Scott Barnes takes that as an ominous sign. "Silverlight is dead," said Barnes, in a video blog post. Barnes went so far as to say the Silverlight team within Microsoft has been split up. Microsoft officials were not immediately able to offer a comment.

Questions about Silverlight notwithstanding, Microsoft's decision to expose Bing to Apple and Android users could pay off. Combined, those platforms hold about 71% of the U.S. market for mobile operating systems, while Windows Phone and Windows Mobile devices hold less than 6%, according to the latest data from Comscore.

That may be why, according to Basu, Microsoft's Bing is now available for Apple and Google-powered devices, and not for Windows Phone 7. The latter, however, is coming--along with a Bing app for Blackberry. "We're working to release the same consistent experience for RIM and Windows Phone 7 devices in the future," said Basu.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
rlawson346
50%
50%
rlawson346,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/10/2011 | 1:39:24 PM
re: iPhone, Android Get Bing Search First
Tons of errors in this article. If this article is true, I must be the luckiest guy on Earth. My WP7 device has Bing.

Also, ditto on Red Panda's comment below. A basic fact check before posting is in order. Most of these errors could have been easily prevented.
VasyaPupkinsan
50%
50%
VasyaPupkinsan,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/5/2011 | 8:33:10 AM
re: iPhone, Android Get Bing Search First
For WP7 agitated fanboys. Read the article...
"We're working to release the same consistent experience for RIM and Windows Phone 7 devices in the future," said Basu.
So there will be a bLing aPP for WP7.
VasyaPupkinsan
50%
50%
VasyaPupkinsan,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/5/2011 | 8:25:13 AM
re: iPhone, Android Get Bing Search First
Bing sounds ridiculously ostentatious. Just one ugly word I hate to pronouce. The same as Zune, Metro..... can't stand it.
WinPho 7 and its Metro is one retarded conception, no matter what.
waynejk
50%
50%
waynejk,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/4/2011 | 4:26:01 PM
re: iPhone, Android Get Bing Search First
Windows Phone 7 (and especially 7.5 Mango) IS Bing. The whole OS is Bing. A strength of the Windows Phone platform is integration and not having to launch a separate app for every little thing. Please use a Windows Phone before critiquing it.
andrewonedegree
50%
50%
andrewonedegree,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/4/2011 | 10:28:53 AM
re: iPhone, Android Get Bing Search First
Couple of points that are WRONG in this. Silverlight is not supported on iOS and Android to deliver apps. Secondly WP7 has a far more powerful version of Bing - which includes scout, voice search, video search, barcode recognition etc etc. Also this is a hybrid app, which means elements have been written in HTML 5, so that will be the presentation layer only, not anything to do with how it works. Remember that the app will be doing all its main work via services running in Windows Azure!

Finally re Silverlight. Silverlight the name maybe dead in the long term, but Silverlight is not dead. It has another version coming and is essentially Metro and guess what, Windows Phone applications are delivered using Silverlight!

Metro is Windows 8 native application language. So PLEASE get your facts right. Silverlight is XAML with c#, vb etc .NET managed code. Metro apps are guess what, XAML with managed code delivered via c# and vb etc .net syntax. Sure some include libraries have changed, but they change between different releases of .NET in any case! Yes I know you can write "apps" using HTML 5, but you are limited in what you can deliver with HTML 5....

Essentialy Silverlight has moved from being a niche web technology for Microsoft to a core technology used to deliver a single type of experience and design framework across all devices....Silverlight the name maybe dead in the long run, but XAML with Managed Code and .NET libraries are becoming the core of microsoft deliverables and technology for developers...The name may change though to WinRT and Metro...But whats in a name!
Red Panda
50%
50%
Red Panda,
User Rank: Apprentice
11/3/2011 | 7:30:06 PM
re: iPhone, Android Get Bing Search First
What do you mean that Bing is not on Windows Phone 7? It certainly is, it even has it's own dedicated button. Not only does it have a dedicated button, but the Bing on Windows Phone 7 is much more than just search. It includes Local Scout, Music Identification (a la Shazam or Sound Hound), Vision (bar code scanner), and voice recognition.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest, Nov. 10, 2014
Just 30% of respondents to our new survey say their companies are very or extremely effective at identifying critical data and analyzing it to make decisions, down from 42% in 2013. What gives?
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of November 16, 2014.
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.