Microsoft’s answer to Google, Bing, made its debut on 3rd June 2009, with the aim of bringing a fresh approach to search. Fast forward five years later and the search engine has made some strides in the last half-decade. Here’s a look back at how it’s evolved over the last five years.

The Bing home and search pages

Bing is known for its beautiful and vivid homepages, which is probably why they haven’t gone through any drastic make overs since 2009, this is what the first home and search page looked like.

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And this is what they look like today.

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Visit the Bing Homepage Gallery to see every homepage image that has been used in different countries over the years.

Bing for mobile and iPad

In 2011, Bing launched its iPad client and included what the company called the Touch and Decide experience, which allows users in certain parts of the world to search trends, watch movies or buy tickets, view multiple maps, daily weather forecasts and a voice search function.

Bing also introduced new features such as geo-fencing and customised interfaces to improve its existing Android and iOS mobile apps.

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Bing for iPad

The three-column format

In 2012, Bing introduced 3-column format on the results page that brings up three different results in three columns including results according to information from the web, Bing and people on the internet or your friends on social networks who were looking for or gave answers to search queries.

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Smart Search, Entity Knowledge and Maps Preview

Last year saw the introduction of Windows Smart Search, a feature that brings up facts, photos, files, and apps related to a particular search. The introduction of Entity Knowledge meant that users could now find top results and related apps that are relevant to their likes, tastes, surroundings and previous clicks.

A separate map app called Bing Maps Preview launched offering features such as the ability to explore maps in 3D, search for businesses, get driving, transit and walking directions, browse local business and call or book restaurants and hotels directly from the app.

New and improved apps and search functions

This year Bing improved its existing Smart Search, Maps, Entity Knowledge functions and update its Android, iOS and Windows app with a host of new features. Just recently, it streamlined its Android app and added a Pedometer to the Bing Fitness app.

What lies next for Bing? The company didn’t give any clear indications, but it did say, “you should expect relevant information to come to you when and where you need it. You should expect experiences to adapt to you and your context, instead of the other way around.  You should expect proactive experiences that anticipate what you need. You should expect information to be actionable for what you need at home or work.”

[Source – Bing Blog. Image – Bing]