Microsoft test drives new Bing Offers features in Seattle

In April, Microsoft first announced Bing Offers, a shopping coupon and sales service that lets users find the best discounts from both local and national retailers. Today, Microsoft has announced a new pilot program that it hopes will give consumers a faster way to take advantage of special Internet deals.

The program is called Bing Offers Card-Linked and it is currently available only in Seattle. The official Bing blog states that users in that city can sign up on their Bing Offers site with their Microsoft Account and their debit or credit card to participate in the program. Once they are signed up, users will get reminders about local savings and deals in a variety of ways, including emails and notifications on programs like Skype and Microsoft's many Bing apps.

The blog adds:

When you use your card to make a qualified purchase at participating local business, just as you normally would at a retail store or a restaurant, you are immediately notified about your savings and you will receive the discounts directly on your card statement.

This will allow Bing Offers to basically eliminate the need for users to print up coupons or pre-purchase specific deals that they later forget about or be unable to use. Microsoft is partnering in this new project with the First Data transaction processing company as well as businesses such as Pizza Hut, Mooyah Burgers, Buca Di Beppo and more. Microsoft will expand the new Bing Offers Card-Linked program to other cites in the future.

Source: Microsoft | Image via Microsoft

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I'm in the USA but I think Microsoft needs to focus on Europe to improve bing's quality and features which is always the first thing said by people outside the US which should increase its market share in its battle with Google.