Feature Article

May 03, 2011

RIM Turns to Microsoft to Offer Bing Search Engine

Research In Motion (RIM) has taken a few steps forward in making an even bigger dent in the ever-growing mobile phone market as the company announced that its new BlackBerry devices will default to Microsoft's Bing search engine and maps.

While Google is the search engine of choice for two-thirds of U.S. questions, according to research firm comScore, Bing is right behind at 13.9 percent.

This latest move and the fact that RIM, a global leader in wireless innovation that made its mark with the introduction of the BlackBerry Solution in 1999, has a close partnership with Adobe Systems demonstrates the strategy of cooperation in a mobile market now dominated by Apple and Google, according to recent reports.

This move is part of RIM’s effort to set its PlayBook tablet apart from Apple’s iPad and for awhile has emphasized the fact that the PlayBook, as opposed to the iPad, can handle Adobe’s Flash software.

During a surprise appearance on stage at the BlackBerry World conference in Orlando, Fla., Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said that Bing, already packed on the PlayBook, will be "deeply integrated at the BlackBerry operating system level" on RIM's new smartphones.

CCS Insight analyst Geoff Blaber added that Microsoft is suddenly gaining some “

"Microsoft is suddenly gaining some considerable traction in mobile as the industry seeks to counter Google's growing dominance," said CCS Insight analyst Geoff Blaber.

He added that RIM has surreptitiously gained a foothold in mapping and search without investing directly.

"The mobile wars will bring strange bedfellows together," IDC analyst Al Hilwa said.

In other RIM news, the maker of BlackBerry smartphones, recently launched Facebook for BlackBerry PlayBook, a new app with features of Facebook.

Facebook for BlackBerry PlayBook is optimized for the seven-inch high resolution, multi-touch LCD display of the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet.

“There are over 30 million users of our Facebook for BlackBerry smartphones app who are staying in touch with their social network while on the go,” said Tom Goguen, vice president of Collaboration and Social Networking at Research In Motion, in a statement.

Carrie Schmelkin is a Web Editor for MobilityTechzone. Previously, she worked as Assistant Editor at the New Canaan Advertiser, a 102-year-old weekly newspaper, covering news and enhancing the publication's social media initiatives. Carrie holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and a bachelor's degree in English from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves

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