New Chapter in the Search War

by Alexandru Lungu 4. February 2011 23:19


Google to Microsoft: Cheaters!
Microsoft to Google: Is this the way smart guys are called today? 

The above is my personal interpretation of what started with this post in which Google say that they have proved that Bing copies their results, by making tests with some unusual words. Microsoft responded here and then the entire web went frenzy.

Let’s look from the Bing user perspective.  He wants to get better results so he agrees to let Microsoft get what it needs to improve its service. And Microsoft gets user’s data stream; if the user searches something on any search engine Microsoft records what the user has chosen and improves Bing. It records user preferences.  

But, for those preferences, Google (or any other search engine) helped with good search results. Maybe better than Microsoft's, otherwise the user would have used only Bing.

We all learn from our collective customers, and we all should, say the Bing Team. “We all should” means Google also, as it has also a browser and a toolbar and can do the same, but Google didn’t think of it. Maybe because this isn’t convenient for the number one on the market with the engine still considered the best; the competitors have more to learn from it than it has to learn from them. So, it wants Microsoft to stop.

I don’t think Microsoft will stop as there doesn’t seem to be anything illegal. (If it were, we would’ve probably already had a law suit). The PR war has started and the impression on user might be surprising – the copy thing might be a two edges sword – the user might interpret it this way: if we search with Google we have the Google engine, if we use Microsoft’ service we have Bing + Google engines together which sounds better so we’ll chose the latter. But, most of them couldn’t care less what Google or Microsoft does.

In my opinion Google saw themselves as the winners of the search war too early. Microsoft didn’t give up. They got more specialists, more innovative ideas and lately the results are starting to be seen; their search engine if not outperforms at least caches up Google’s.  And Google is off guard; and will try  everything to undermine Bing; this time by inducing the idea that if Bing improved so much is just because it copies Google’ search results.

Hopefully the war will never end; this way, we the users will have the most to benefit.

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