Bing’s iOS & Android Apps Providing Faster SearchingPosted by Paul Smith | February 5, 2016
Bing is making some big changes. The search engine’s last iOS update was only a couple of months ago, with December bringing Bing up to speed by adding third-party app integration, a bar code scanner, and in-store price comparisons to the features on offer. Now for February, Bing has again updated its iOS app and has launched an all-new Bing For Android app that essentially does the same thing for Android that the December update did for iOS, bringing the two apps into feature-parity so that users of both systems might find Bing more appealing. Microsoft has said that their goal with the new app updates is to allow Bing users to do and find more of what they want with fewer keystrokes and a more intuitive interface. New features that help accomplish this goal include adding buttons for common queries, such as “near me”, “restaurants”, “news”, and others. Further speeding things up and improving the usefulness of the Bing app is integration with common, popular services such as Uber, Yelp, and Facebook, all of which are now accessed with one click from the Bing app main page. Both the iOS and Android versions of the beefed-up Bing now allow you to access real-time price comparisons among major retailers such as Amazon, Wal-Mart, and Target, thanks to the implementation of the bar code scanner. All you need to do to access the scanner for both apps is to hold your finger on the search button until a camera icon appears, use your phone’s camera to scan the barcode, and the app finds the barcode in Bing’s database and returns the price comparisons, along with any other product information that is available from the database. All told, this update represents a big step forward for Bing, bringing it into line with similar features offered by recent newcomer to the mobile serach engine app game, Relcy, with some features going above and beyond what has been offered before by others. Whether the update is enough to push Bing to the top of the pile remains to be seen, but for now we are enjoying the move toward ease of access and improved interface, as well as the strong focus on improved functionality of the search engine itself, and we look forward to seeing what else Bing and Microsoft have hidden up their sleeves.