Last week at the Search Summit in San Francisco, we showcased a brand new way to search that is designed to help you interact with friends and take action without compromising the core search experience. Starting today, people in the United States can give it a try at www.bing.com/new.
Since most of you weren’t able to attend the summit, Qi Lu, Harry Shum and I shot a short video where we discuss the design decisions and technical underpinnings behind this release.
As we discussed last week, Bing now integrates search and people in our social networks through a dedicated social “sidebar.” With sidebar, Bing brings together the best of the web, with what experts and your friends know, giving you the confidence to act. This new way to search lets you share, discover, and interact with friends like you do in real life. If you’re on the go, you’ll notice we’ve optimized the layout and placement of the social results on the mobile device for smaller screen sizes and for touch input, so the user experience will be different than what people see on a PC.
As you search, Bing suggests friends on Facebook who might know about the topic you’re searching for based on what they “like”, their Facebook profile information, and photos they’ve shared.
For example, if you’re searching for diving spots in Hawaii, you might see a friend who lived in Hawaii, your sister who shared photos from her honeymoon in Hawaii, and a buddy who “likes” a restaurant in Hawaii. You can then ask them for recommendations right from Bing.
You may not always see friends you expect to show up for a number of reasons. Bing uses public Facebook information and content you’ve given Bing permission to use, such as friends’ photos on Facebook. We won’t match friends based on other Facebook content such as status updates or check-ins. Bing also respects you and your friends’ privacy settings so you won’t see friends who have opted out of Facebook instant personalization or blocked the Bing app.
We’re just getting started bringing friends into your search experience and will continue getting better over time. Like everything with Bing, we’re constantly working to improve the product so let us know if you have feedback.
– Derrick Connell, Vice President, Bing