Bing for Mobile updates have hit today for the iPhone and Android, and Microsoft made sure to make it a jam-packed upgrade over the previous versions. With better implementation of Bing for Mobile on Windows Phone 7, Microsoft has decided to give the other platforms some better treatment, too. Searching for items, checking in, maps and so many more features have been updated, so let’s take a look to see what each platform got in terms of new goodies, shall we?
For the iPhone, here is what Bing for Mobile is getting:
- Streamlined Homepage: The homepage has received a facelift with an enriched layout and design for easier navigation and feature discoverability.
- Find the Perfect Restaurant: Autosuggest got a boost, allowing you to refine searches on the fly. With a tap of the finger, you can easily find the perfect restaurant with the cuisine, price, location and atmosphere you want.
- Search, Find, Decide and Book: Once you’ve decided where you want to go, finalize plans by reserving a table on OpenTable or order takeout from Grubhub – without leaving the Bing app.
- See Before You Go: Familiarize yourself with a location before you go, using Bing Streetside. Streetside, a new mobile mapping feature, provides a multi-street level panorama of a location so you can take a virtual walk through the streets with a view of a locations and landmarks. As you slide the street level imagery sideways, the view of the sidewalk is seamlessly constructed including an overlay of business listings, street names and store fronts.
- Check–In: When you get to your destination, check-in with Bing and simultaneously update your Facebook, Foursquare and Windows Live Messenger status.
- Go Social with your Plans: Looking to plan a last-minute meet-up or happy hour? The new “Plan” feature lets you share local search results directly to your Facebook Wall, and plan a night based on the “likes” and comments of your friends.
- Location-Based Reminders: Forgot to pick up your dry cleaning? Now use the “Reminder” feature that lets you know when you’re close to a location. Set a reminder from the detail business listing page, type a custom message and Bing will remind you the next time you’re near the location.
- Never Miss the Bus: We’ve added a real-time transit updates for Boston, San Francisco and Seattle, so you never miss the bus again (more cities to come). Real-time transit shows if a bus is on schedule, early or delayed, with predictions for arrival times. Standard transit routes for 11 cities are also live including Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, New Jersey, New York City, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington DC, and Vancouver BC with more to come.
- Voice Search: Voice search, powered by Microsoft TellMe, is faster than before and allows you to fine-tune your existing search using your voice, without having to repeat the entire search. Tips and hints have also been added, providing helpful information on how best to use voice search to complete tasks.
- See it? Search it!: “Bing Vision” lets you search using your phone’s camera. Bring an object into view and Bing will detect text and present a tool to select words for a search. If the object has a barcode, Bing will instantly return product results. Bing Vision can detect product information from UPC codes and cover art for books, CD, DVDs and video games.
That was a little overwhelming, wasn’t it? It seems both search, social networking and location based services got a nice little boost. So what’s up for Android?
- What’s Nearby: Bing will automatically detect “what’s nearby” and present dynamic and full category search pages.
- Bookmark Images: We know how much you love Bing images, and now you can bookmark any image result from the Web to the device.
- Expand Your Search: The Search Widget allows you to search third party apps (e.g. Yelp), in addition to contacts, apps, audio files and the Web. (Only apps with registered data can be surfaced in search results.)
- Search, Share, Decide and Book: To make planning a night out easier, share search results with friends using any loaded app that can accept and share content by using the “share” command. And, with the integration of OpenTable and GrubHub into the Bing for Mobile search results, you can make reservations or order take out – without switching between apps.
It’s a little lighter than what became available on the iPhone, but still pretty good for the Android version. Bookmarking, saving items, sharing and so forth should be a little easier now. The option to search for restaurants and book reservations is pretty neat.
The updates for Bing for Mobile are available immediately for the iPhone and Android from the iTunes App Store and Android Market, respectively.