Is Microsoft Gaining Ground In The Search Wars?

from the maybe-a-little dept

A new report makes the surprising assertion that Microsoft is actually gaining ground in the search race and that in just the last couple of months it’s significantly closed the gap with Yahoo for the #2 slot. Assuming the numbers are legitimate, this would be the first sign of life out of this business in quite a while. Still, it’s hard to say whether Microsoft’s momentum is real. The company is probably getting a moderate boost from the adoption of Vista and the new IE7, which has Live search set as a default. If you’ll recall, this setting prompted Google to make an antitrust complaint against the company. The company has also been using other lures to get users, such as awarding points to certain searchers, which can be redeemed to purchase stuff from the company. None of this suggests that users are really switching from one site to another in significant numbers (which is what would be significant), though perhaps Microsoft is picking up a few marginal users that aren’t particularly attached to one service or another. If true, Microsoft will probably hit a ceiling pretty quickly.

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Companies: microsoft

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Comments on “Is Microsoft Gaining Ground In The Search Wars?”

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Buzz says:


Well, with Google sitting at the top unable to surpass perfection, all their competitors can do IS gain ground. ^_^

OK, so Google isn’t PERFECT, but really, they’ve created a whole industry off what they do best. Why is Microsoft trying to outdo them? We don’t see Google releasing its own OS anytime soon.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Mitch the GOP Bitch

Google is an out of control Corperation that is nothing more than a political arm of the scumbag Democrats.

what are you talking about???

I’ll play along and pretend that made sense, then I’ll hit myself in the head with a hammer a few times and say:

I guess the Dems need something to try to counteract the political arm of the Scumbag Corporations, opps, I mean Scumbag Republicans…The Whitehouse!

Nasty Old Geezer says:

No monopolies

Any company that gains more than one-third of a market for anything becomes corrupt — no exceptions that I am aware of.

Neither Google nor Microsoft needs to be firewalled, they just need viable competition so they are kept in line with the public interest.

THe scariest thing to me is that MS is stil using the same weapon — their OS monopoly — to crush competition in other areas. Judge Jackson had the correct remedy, but with enough money you can buy the verdict you want.

Norman619 (profile) says:

Re: No monopolies

What monopoly? Sorry but there are other OS options out there. The problem is that software vendors are making those options less viable by not porting apps over to them. You can’t blame MS for this. You are free to switch to OSX and the various flavors of Linux. If there software base was not there for Windows then this would be a whole different ballgame.

Nasty Old Geezer says:

Re: Re: No monopolies

You seem to imply that there is not a monopoly unless there is only one remaining product. A monopoly exists when the dominant product has the ability to bend the market to its own advantage through non-competitive means.

The existance of Linux, UNIX, MAC, or whatever does not mean MS does not have monoply power over the desktop OS market. THere is more competition in the server OS market, but MS continues to employ the same tactics that have been held illegal in the past.

They use the leverage of the overwhelmingly dominant desktop OS to compete in unrelated fields. This lverage is applied in two ways: ISVs are discouraged from writing or porting apps to other platforms by the excellent MS support system and implied threats of loss of status the MS Developer Network. Also, PC manufacturers also get the carrot-and-stick treatment via licensing arrangements. THe recent Dell offer of Unbuntu is astonishing — unless MS has re-evaluated and decided that 80-85% market share is ‘enough’ and trying to get the rest will simply stir up trouble.

You mention porting applications to non-MS OS platforms. Breaking MS into an OS company and an application company would have provided the incentive to do that. We would have had Office for Linux in short order. Intuit would have followed shortly with Quicken and Turbo Tax, and all the Office dependent ISVs racing to stay up.

At the same time, a Windows OS company would have been busy publishing ALL the API calls and getting serious about security and stability, since they could no longer count on sales brought in by the captive productivity apps.

Overture/Yahoo!-EX says:


Too bad no one realizes that Yahoo/Overture has served up MSN search results since 2001, exclusively….Oh and uh….Google….yeah, they are great…BUT…they duplicated Overture/’s original business model and added the Google flair…proving once again that, YES, this is a lucrative business.

Norman619 (profile) says:

Set as default?

“The company is probably getting a moderate boost from the adoption of Vista and the new IE7, which has Live search set as a default. If you’ll recall, this setting prompted Google to make an antitrust complaint against the company. “

WTF are they talking about? When you first launch IE7 after install it forces you to CHOOSE a default search. There is no “default.” Google are a bunch of crybabies who want MS to cripple the native Vista search to make their desktop search more attractive. Nevermind the fact that the search has been in place for a LONG time just never implemented properly until Vista. What a load of crap.

SailorAlphaCentauri says:

Re: Agree w/ Comment above

What are you talking about!?! Yahoo is not “obsolete” and does a much better job of finding specific sites than Google could ever do. Google is useful for finding out more about something, but if you’re looking for something more specific, Google doesn’t do it for me. Besides, if you look at the stats, Google gets more search traffic, but Yahoo isn’t hurting for anything & still has the #1 e-mail on the web.

The Smart Guy says:

The Real Reason

The reason is
There are games there that utilize microsoft’s search engine. If you accumulate enough points you will get decent prizes. There is also a macro that can aid you in solving the puzzles.

Each puzzle uses the search engine at least 10 times. Using the macro you can play many times in a short about of time.
if you play 100 games then 100 * 10 = 10000 uses of search engine per 100 games per person

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