Microsoft says Google isn’t playing fair with search results

microsofr v google

Microsoft is at Google’s throat again. This time the complaints come in regards to Google’s alleged misconduct in promoting their own services above competitors in search results. Basically, Microsoft and other companies are accusing Google of using their uber popular search engine to promote their own stuff. One way they are trying to prove this is by using eye tracking software. The image below shows an example.


The user did a simple search for “ipod” ad revived the results above. The red color indicates where the eyes were looking the most. The biggest and most eye-catching results happen to be from Google Shopping, which is above Apple’s official store. Not only does Google put their own Shopping store above the Apple Store, but they also use big images to make it more noticeable.

You can see why Microsoft and others are making these accusations against Google. The antitrust complaints against Google started over three years ago. Google has tried several times to make concessions to make the charges go away, but the EU is not so easily persuaded. Obviously Microsoft has Bing to compete with Google Search, so it’s no surprise they are trying to win this battle.

Personally, I have started using Bing as an experiment and I have to say I see their point. Bing definitely shows more official results in the top of searches. It also doesn’t show nearly as many social results, which can get in the way of what you really want. If you aren’t happy with Google you should give Bing a try.

[via BGR]

  • Damon Nevils

    Huge google Fan, but I have been transitioning to Windows (Nokia 928 and purchasing 2520).

    Now that this out of the way… If I owned a website to provide information I too would steer you to my store, this should be expected. Why would I funnel money elsewhere. It is not like they are manipulating searches so as to exlude information people are looking for…leading off search results with “money makers” seems to be good business practice. If I search on the apple website I see their apple products, if I search other sites the results are skewed as well…. seems like jealousy rearing its head….

    Screw complaining about them and build Bing up to be a true competitor by making Bing the king through Windows Phone. Get it in the hands of masses just like google has done and Microsoft won’t have to worry….I have found WP* superior for my needs, others just need to get it in their hands.

  • I just did this search in Google, and it does not look like that at all.

  • You should probably try searching for the same thing.

    Also, everyone’s Google results are a little different.

  • Sorry, here is the same search. I actually think Google shopping is one of the more evil things Google has ever done, just not for the reasons Microsoft is talking about here. Most people thought it was a legit price comparison site when in fact it was just advertising. Google has started to make this more clear as you can see in my grab. Here is the exact search to be fair to this article.

  • Sondrek17

    Great article.

    I am a huge android fan, so my opinion is not neutral. Microsoft is pathetic. Attacking Google for something like this is unexplainable. Granted Google will point you to one of their services, but they do not force you directly into the site.

  • robjackson81

    In the upper right, the icon of the “person” and the “globe” notice that the person is selected. This means your search results are personalized based on your search history, google+ profile, and location among other things.

    Click the globe and you’ll get typical, unaltered results. Not sure this will change anything dramatically but in general, the two options present very different rankings.

    Don’t forget that Google is also a brilliant analytics and algorithm company. They’re not just showing the same thing to everyone. They’re showing thousands of variations of results for the exact same search and programmatically determining which format of ads and rankings yield the most clicks and best user experience.

  • Rand0m3

    And they also have people who pay attention to articles like this and “fix” the search results before they gain too much steam as negative press so that google fans can show that everyone else doesn’t know how to use google properly :) (just kidding on the google fb part) but yeah, that particular search looks completely different now. to the point that the Google store isn’t even in the first page of results. Maybe this was a Christmas ranking they were doing because more people were looking to buy product “x” during these few weeks than they were looking for information or news about them? I don’t like Google for other reasons but as a search engine I can kinda see how this might happen even without them forcing it just by user patterns.