Microsoft and Getty settle lawsuit, announce partnership
Last year Getty Images sued Microsoft over what it alleged was “massive copyright infringement” thanks to the new Bing Image Widget, which prompted Microsoft to pull the widget offline. The company’s have no doubt been feverishly working on the dispute behind the scenes, because it’s now been announced that not only is Getty dropping the lawsuit, but that the two companies will partner “to develop image-rich, compelling products and services for Microsoft products like Bing and Cortana.” No word yet on what exactly they’re working on, but it “will use Getty Images’ latest API innovations and our award-winning visual content to take search experiences to a new level.”
Google to launch search service for plumbers and electricians
Buzzfeed reports that Google is working on a new search service that will connect searchers with home service providers such as plumbers, electricians and mechanics. Buzzfeed says that Google plan to formally announce the project at an “advertising conference” later this spring, and that it will be “integrated into Google’s core search offering.” As of yet, Google has not commented on the story, and Buzzfeed simply cites “sources close to the company.” It sounds like the new project could be very similar to Amazon’s Home Services, so it’ll be interesting how Google’s offering stacks up.
Google begins bolding answers, not just search queries
Google has long bolded search queries anywhere they pop up on the results page to help searchers identify the relevance of results to their query. The company has now taken that one step further by also bolding the answers to questions that users have searched for. Searching for ‘what color is the sky’, for example, sees words including ‘blue’ and ‘red’ bolded on the results page. This bolding happens both in the Knowledge Graph box at the top of the results page, and in the snippets of standard search results.