Microsoft 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.
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?