Bing vs. Google offers a side-by-side comparison that lets users see for themselves which search engine works better. We tried some searches, and our findings are inside.
First we tried some basic searches: “weather” gave us similar contextual results, with current weather and the forecast for the next several days. Next we looked for nearby restaurants. We searched “indian food,” “indian food dc,” and “indian food 20037 [our zip code].” All three searches gave us local restaurants on Google; only the last one did on Bing (although Bing linked us to local Yelp results, which is useful).
Then we searched in the areas that Bing claims it does better. Searching for flight info, we tried “American 257.” Both sites gave us the departure and arrival locations and times, although Bing also gave us the expected terminal and gate. We’re not sure how practical this actually is, considering it’s probably only useful if you’re meeting someone at the airport, in which case that info is displayed everywhere (not to mention that unless you have a ticket, you’re not going to be allowed near the gate to meet the flight).
Next, we tried another suggested Bing search: “fitness.” Both sites gave similar results, mostly links to fitness magazines and sites. Bing gave us some related search results for “fitness clubs,” “fitness equipment,” and “fitness programs,” which was helpful, while Google suggested these (and more) related searches, but didn’t provide results. Google also gave us news and blog links (probably not very useful in this case) and Google Maps results for nearby gyms, which, we imagine, would be useful.
We tried a relatively easy, topical question: When does Harry Potter 6 come out? Both search engines unfortunately decided that Yahoo! Answers was a good source for information; sure enough, that answer (July 17), was wrong (it’s July 15). The rest of the results were similar sites like WikiAnswers, but Google managed to provide one of these community question sites that had the correct date.
Here’s one where Bing really excelled: “MLB scores” yielded the scores from yesterday’s baseball games and the schedules for today’s games.
Except for the last result, there wasn’t much difference between the two search engines, although this is obviously not exhaustive. Try some searches and let us know in the comments if you see any big differences.
Bing-vs-Google: Now you can try them side by side [Consumer Reports Electronics]