Microsoft adds Visual Search to Bing

New tool lets users browse categories of images to find what they're looking for.

Bing Visual Search

Forget searching with words, Bing's newest trick is to let users search using pictures.

Microsoft's search engine now lets users browser through categories of images to find what they're looking for.

"How many times have you seen a movie trailer and forgotten the name of it the next day? You go online to search for it but you can't seem to find the movie with 'what's-his-name' in it anywhere but you can picture the actor in your head," asked Bing's Todd Schwartz on the official blog.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Microsoft claimed its own research showed that a fifth of users "process" image-based results more quickly than text.

The Visual Search system works using what Schwartz called "data groupings galleries." For example, there's one for movies and another for books, letting a user scroll through galleries or select categories to further refine the grouping, such as by author.

Clicking on the iPhone apps gallery lets the images be organised by popularity, cost, release date and name, while the images can be further refined by clicking categories such as top apps, free, paid for, newest, most expensive and type.

Bing Visual Search iPhone apps

At present, there are 39 main groupings including travel destinations, dog breeds and celebrities. Schwartz compared the galleries to a catalogue, keeping with Bing's focus on helping consumers with their shopping.

Advertisement
Advertisement - Article continues below

Visual Search requires Microsoft's Silverlight, and Schwartz noted that it's still in beta phase, with more features expected to be rolled out over the next few months. It checked out on the Bing site here, but only if you're using the US version of the site - it's not yet live in the UK.

Click here to find out how Bing's done over its first three months and here to have your say in our Bing search debate channel.

Featured Resources

The case for a marketing content hub

Transform your digital marketing to deliver customer expectations

Download now

Fast, flexible and compliant e-signatures for global businesses

Be at the forefront of digital transformation with electronic signatures

Download now

Why CEOS should care about the move to SAP S/4HANA

And how they can accelerate business value

Download now

IT faces new security challenges in the wake of COVID-19

Beat the crisis by learning how to secure your network

Download now
Advertisement

Recommended

Visit/marketing-comms/search-engine-optimization-seo/355585/duckduckgo-vs-google-privacy-or-popularity
search engine optimization (SEO)

DuckDuckGo vs. Google: Privacy or popularity?

7 May 2020

Most Popular

Visit/server-storage/network-attached-storage-nas/355849/western-digital-sneaked-inferior-smr-tech-into
network attached storage (NAS)

Western Digital accused of sneaking inferior SMR tech into NAS drives

1 Jun 2020
Visit/security/data-breaches/355777/easyjet-faces-class-action-lawsuit-over-data-breach
data breaches

EasyJet faces class-action lawsuit over data breach

26 May 2020
Visit/operating-systems/microsoft-windows/355812/microsoft-warns-against-installing-windows-10-may-2020
Microsoft Windows

Microsoft warns users not to install Windows 10's May update

28 May 2020