Thursday, December 03, 2009

Microsoft Launches Bing Maps

Microsoft Corporation is doing all it can to try to ensure that, someday its efforts pay off and perhaps the oldest internet entity might just be able to give a solid nudge to its arch rival, Google Inc., the search engine giant that has virtually taken over the world wide web.

Keeping the stride and spirit alive, Microsoft has announced the launch of its very own mapping service in beta mode, called Bing Maps, a highly media rich service that looks like any other mapping service currently in existence. Bing Maps is based entirely on the Microsoft Silverlight multimedia platform, providing a smooth and interactive visual experience and also makes it far easier to zoom in and out of maps and 3D buildings. Furthermore, Microsoft has introduced ‘StreetSide’ which Microsoft’s answer to Google Maps’ ‘Street View’.

One of the most interesting features of Bing Maps is the Application Gallery, that features several social networks, such Twitter, where in geo-location data can be implemented into Twitter, which then displays the tweets posted by users on their location on the maps. This feature could be especially helpful in getting real-time updates on news events in a certain location.

The Local Lens application is yet another highly innovative service that has been employed with Bing Maps, wherein, the service indexes blog posts and then relay those posts as per the topics they have covered and then display them on the locations mentioned in the posts.

Bing Maps is also being seen as an effort by Microsoft to advertise the Bing search engine, that was launched in the month of June this year and since then there has been mass advertising to promote the service. The promotions for the Bing service haven’t gone to waste, as Microsoft has witnessed a growth in the search market, from 8% to 9.9%, ever since Bing was introduced.