Microsoft talks about adding Bing Smart Search in Windows 8.1

Microsoft is already promoting how Bing Smart Search has been put into Windows 8.1 in a new TV commercial. Today, the company is revealing more information on how the Bing and Windows teams worked together to add integrated search inside Microsoft's next OS update.

In a blog post, Microsoft's Kieran Snyder, a member of the Bing User Experience team, said that the collaboration actually began when both teams worked on the Bing search app that was released with Windows 8 in 2012. For Windows 8.1 Snyder states, "both the Windows and Bing engineering teams knew that we wanted to go all in on search – together."

In fact, Bing created a new internal team in the division just to work on Smart Search and Snyder claims that nearly 1,000 people worked on the feature in some way. He adds that every Friday morning for the past 15 months, "... every User Interface PM and designer on the project has gotten together for two hours" to collaborate."

In terms of getting Bing Smart Search to work inside Windows 8.1, Snyder says, "It took us many rounds of iteration to make sure the Smart Search experience exactly preserved web search expectations, but didn’t compromise the efficiency of quick commanding in Windows." He also talks about what  Microsoft calls "search heroes", which use the company's Satori database of billions of information points. Search heroes are what Snyder calls "mini-apps that Windows creates on the fly".

He uses an example of searching for music inside Windows 8.1 to showcase how search heroes work. Snyder says:

With Bing, Windows, and the Xbox team working together, we can present a big, beautiful answer that puts the most relevant information and actions front and center. We are able to include immediate music playback of all the most popular songs in the Xbox Music catalog, serve up music videos, launch apps that can help you go deeper and get more done, and surface other information that is easily accessible with a swipe of your finger.

Bing Smart Search also allows for Microsoft to put in new search updates every time someone opens Windows 8.1 through the company's new update pipeline and flighting service, as opposed to waiting for a standard software update. Snyder claims this new process is Microsoft's "largest-scale investment in server-side development for Windows."

Source: Microsoft | Images via Microsoft

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I am excited for this functionality to get better with time.. the preview is ok but it is a bit slow on the surface RT and I don't like how it needs to exit to go to Internet explorer..

I was doubtful when I first heard about it, but after using it on Windows 8.1 I can tell you that it works quite well. You get the content you want.

I absolutely love this new integration!!! Been using it on the 8.1 preview and the RTM and it just works so well. I was worried about people's rants about ads, but I don't see any ads except for actual search results that are related to my searches. Just shows you not to listen to people and to try things out yourself before commenting. I LOVE how it integrates everything (like photos, travel and music) and doesn't just simply show a boring list of stuff... :-)

The dumb down of Windows never ceases does it. Guess this might be nice on a phone, if the EU doesn't object. Not that we use Bing or Goolge as of late, I don't own a cell/smart phone as of six months ago, and in that time I wish I had it once. Seems to be a necessity for Americans these days. Just one less line for the NSA to keep an eye on, maybe I can get a tax write off? Dual booting with 'nix again, getting up to speed for the day Windows 7 extended support ends, or the next round of your computer belongs to us hits the fan,,,
Sorry so cynical as of late, but if the old boy hadn't been cremated, he'd be rolling in his grave.

Wait what?!? you are on a technology website and you don't even have a cell phone.. why are you even here?! You should be on like a hiking or farming website.. whats the point of being on Neowin if you don't even like windows or smartphones.?!

Bugballou said,
The dumb down of Windows never ceases does it.

What do you expect from a tool that suppose to make every task easier? I guess you are expecting it to get harder.

Maybe for you it's dumbing down, but for most peope all of this is very much welcomed.

I've been using pc's and working with IT since the first pc came out, and all I ever heared is 'Why is it so complicated?'

Accept the fact that even creating a shortcut on the desktop is hard for a LOT of people, and most of them have no real clue how to work a pc, let alone the Start Menu.

The moment I show W8/Metro on my Surface to people, they all go 'ha, this is what I want/need.....'

The simplicity is one of the main reasons the iPad is so popular.