Bing 5.5

Microsoft's search engine at your fingertips


  • Superb user interface
  • Excellent image search
  • Powerful maps and directions
  • Accurate voice search


  • Movies option not fully functional
  • News section is a bit cluttered


It's something of a novelty to find a Microsoft product running on an Apple OS which doesn't totally suck.

Yet that's what the software giant has achieved with its excellent Bing app for iPhone. This compact, yet powerful search application gives very easy access to the Bing search engine, as well as offering a load of useful extras such as maps, directions, movies, news and a business directory.

Unlike Google's mobile app for iPhone, Bing is self-contained, opening all search results within the application itself rather than redirecting links to be loaded in Safari. One tap on a search result and the web page loads quickly within Bing. Like the Google app, Bing also supports voice searching, and the technology seems to work pretty well with a good degree of accuracy.

Bing for iPhone certainly looks a lot more attractive than its Google and Yahoo! equivalents. As with the site itself, the home screen is decked out with an impressive full-screen photograph, usually of some amazing bit of nature. The search entry box and speech icon are located at the top of the screen. There's a dock near the bottom of the interface, which can be toggled on and off, containing shortcuts to Images, Movies, Maps, Businesses, News, and Directions.

The image search in the Bing iPhone app is nothing short of phenomenal. The home screen of the image section displays the main photo from the home screen, only this time a selection of related images are scattered over the top of it. Enter you search and you'll be presented with a neat grid of thumbnails of matching results. Tap on one to open it full screen and you can then visit the source page or flick through all the images matching your search just be sliding your finger left and right.

I was also very impressed with the maps and directions in the Bing app. It automatically detects you location, offers four different views, shows traffic, and more. Navigating maps with your finger couldn't be simpler, and I particularly like the one-touch zoom out button. Bing is remarkably quick and plotting directions and offers detailed information about the journey along with turn-by-turn instructions and traffic info.

Although it's very good, Bing for iPhone still isn't perfect. The 'Movies' function wasn't working at all when I tested it, and the organization of the News section is a little haphazard and cumbersome to navigate.

I'm no Microsoft fanboy, but I have to say I would recommend the Bing app over both the Google's and Yahoo!'s iPhone offerings.

  • Access News to quickly find out what’s happening from homepage. - Enhance the stability of “back” button. - Enhance daily image hotspot searches.


    • Access News to quickly find out what’s happening from homepage. - Enhance the stability of “back” button. - Enhance daily image hotspot searches.

User reviews about Bing

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