Posted November 11, 2009 4:47 pm by with 7 comments

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bing-logo1Microsoft has announced several new features for its rebranded search engine—I mean, “decision engine”—Bing, including the rollout of Bing Videos, a partnership with Wolfram Alpha and a new hover preview feature.

Bing Videos

Yesterday, Bing announced a new video site that will take over the old Microsoft Video (yeah, I’d never heard of it, either). In addition to MSN videos, Bing Video will feature content from Hulu, ABC and YouTube.

While it’s unlikely that Bing Videos will challenge YouTube in a major way, I think it’s a good idea for them to launch their own site, if their goal is merely to increase time on site, and make Bing even more of a go-to resource.

Partnership with Wolfram Alpha

A searchable database of information, Wolfram Alpha announced APIs this summer in the wake of rumors of a deal with Bing. The APIs seemed quell the gossip—but now the two really are teaming up.

The partnership is limited to the area of diet and nutrition (I’m guessing as a test run for a possible wider deal in the future). Bing says this partnership will help its users make decisions about their food choices. When you search for a food on Bing, nutrition information from Wolfram Alpha will appear in a tab on the SERP.

This will also include tools like a BMI calculator.

Advanced Hover Preview Feature

Bing is also bringing and advanced hover preview feature to their SERPs. The press release states that this feature adds:

  • An actual snapshot of the Web site in question
  • A link to the customer service number (where appropriate)
  • Deep links, the most-often-clicked links on the site
  • A search-within-this-site box that allows you to scour the site to find what you’re looking for.
  • Facebook page previews, from which you can view a person’s picture, see who is in their Facebook network and send them a message or friend request.

Conveniently, this preview only shows up when you mouse over a plus-sign on the right side of the screen, rather than every time you mouseover a link (like Snap Preview, which I find so obnoxious). Microsoft made a video so you can see it in action if it’s not on your SERPs yet (warning, it autoplays):

Interestingly, this does showcase some feature that have long been a part of Google’s SERPs, including deep links to the most popular pages of a site and a search box to use the site’s internal search.

What do you think? Which of these features will you be most likely to use?

  • I really think that Wolfram Alpha is something special, so I’m excited to see it finally moving into position where it can reach a wider audience. Bing’s positioning as a decision engine is a good fit for WA, and I’m hopeful that having a lot of people banging on it can spur them to smooth out some of the rough patches it currently has.

  • Great news, Wolfram Alpha is amazing.

    I haven’t been extremely impressed with Bing so far, so it’s nice to see that they are trying to add new features including Wolfram Alpha and the mouse-over preview feature.

    Also, couldn’t agree more that Snap Preview is obnoxious.

  • wow, great new features for bing, but i still can’t see the features here don’t know why
    it’s awesome to see search engines r improving themselves

  • Microsoft look like they are really getting Bing into the swing of things. I haven’t been impressed with the organic results but that’s coming from an expert point of view. Will it work for the everyday user that isn’t so fussy?
    .-= Nigel Burke´s last blog ..Book Review: The New Rules of Marketing & PR by David Meerman Scott =-.

  • I haven’t really used Bing that much, but they are certainly trying to get everyone’s attention! I’m not sure that I’ll ever use Bing that much as it stands, but I’m more likely to give it a go now I think
    .-= Luci´s last blog ..Caffeine launches after Christmas – How will this affect your SEO? =-.

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  • I just really don’t see how Bing is ever going to match google for sheer market share though, so I don’t know how useful these new features will be. If they work well google will just implement them.