binging it on home


I mentioned on Monday that all this week I would be taking the Bing It On Challenge:  changing my search engine habits from Google to Bing.  And I was true to my word:  I changed my default search engine to Bing on both my desktop and laptop computers, and I never once cheated -- I Binged all the way.

The verdict?

Well, to be honest, I'm undecided.  That's not to say that it didn't do the job:  it did.  It's entirely possible that the reason that I occasionally didn't find it as efficient as Google is because by this point Google has memorized all my previous searches (I often don't save a search, just redoing the same search if I need the information again at a later date).  But for whatever reason, there were a few times where it felt like I had to page through Bing before I found the search result I was looking for (often on the second or even third page); whereas Google's results would return what I was looking for on the first page.  Which wasn't so much annoying, by the way, as it was ... you know ... curious.

To double-check, I actually went ahead and took the blind Bing vs. Google test a couple of times -- the first time, the results indicated that I preferred Google; the second time, Bing.  So even on the blind test, I was ambivalent!

Given this, even though my requirement for Binging ends today, I may just keep Bing as my default for another week, just to see how it goes -- perhaps if I've been Binging a while longer, and Bing learns me, it'll eventually wow me.  You never know.

That said, however, there are a couple of things that I would be totally remiss if I didn't mention:

•  Bing Travel.  People, have you ever tried Bing Travel? It is magical.  When you do a search for an airline trip, not only does it tell you which airline offers the cheapest flights, the Price Predictor also tells you whether or not you should go ahead and buy your ticket, or wait, because prices are falling.  How brilliant is this?  For the last few months, it's the primary way I've purchased airline tickets, and I've always been very pleased with the results.  (And for the record, I wasn't required to mention Bing Travel at all in this post -- I just love it that much.)

•  Bing Maps.  I've never actually used Bing Maps myself, but Marcus swears by it -- he's convinced that Bing's maps are far more up-to-date than Google Maps.  He actually searched for his sister's new house (among other places in the UK), and found that her house appeared on Bing Maps, but didn't on Google Maps.  He's been using it for a while now, he says, and strongly recommends.


So there you have it -- my honest-to-goodness experience with using Bing.  How about you -- did you change your habits this week along with me?  What are your thoughts?

(Just like on Monday, this post is underwritten by ALT summit, for their partner Bing.   But here's the thing:  they encouraged me to be completely frank about my experience in changing my search engine-ing habits by using Bing; by gum, that's what I did.  So as is always true on Chookooloonks, you're getting my honest opinion.)