Do you think Daylight Saving Time is kind of weird? We do too. So, we decided to do a little research on how it came to exist. One of the first things we found out was that it was actually a joke proposed by Benjamin Franklin. And did you know Arizona doesn’t recognize DST? How do they get away with that?
Here’s what else we found out.
And finally, Daylight Saving Time starts Sunday, March 9th, so don’t forget to set your clocks forward.
We’ve updated our Bing app on iOS to make your search experience a lot easier. There are multiple new features, so let’s take a look.
We’ve added a widget that’s available wherever you are in the app. With a simple tap, you can return to the homepage, conduct a voice search, conduct a text search or see your recent searches. If you don’t feel like using it, turn it off in the settings and it’ll be out of your way.
Manage Multiple Searches:
You can now manage all your Recent searches on the Recent page. Swipe a tile off the screen, if it’s no longer relevant, open a new one to do a new search, or close them all.
Full screen tiles let you easily explore what’s trending.
Flexible Browsing and Bookmarks:
Whether you prefer to stay searching within the app or to open pages in Safari, you can open a search result via the browser or add a bookmark to quickly access your favorite sites from within the app. In addition, you can now expand autosuggested items to further refine a query and quickly find what you’re looking for.
Shake it Up:
Shake your phone and we’ll roll the dice to show a trending story. Don’t like what you see? Shake it again.
We hope you enjoy it. You can download the new Bing app from the app store right here.
We’ve been hard at work updating our Bing apps as well as bringing a new set of apps to Windows Phone. Today, we’re releasing a comprehensive update to our Bing apps with fresh features and the ability for your personalized content to roam across all your Windows 8.1 devices. We’re also excited to introduce you to three new Bing apps for Windows Phone: Travel, Food & Drink and Health & Fitness.
First, let’s start with the new apps:
New: Introducing the Bing Food & Drink app for Windows Phone
Fans of the Windows 8 Food & Drink app will be happy to see the companion app on Windows Phone. The Bing Food & Drink app was designed with the novice cook and seasoned chef in mind. With thousands of recipes from leading culinary content partners including AllRecipes, BigOven, Epicurious, Bon Appetit, Saveur, Food52 and more, you can now find these on Windows Phone.
Find the Perfect Recipe: The Food & Drink app lets you access over 300,000 illustrated recipes so there’s something for any menu or occasion. With infinite scroll, you can keep scrolling through the selections until something catches your eye.
Easily Create and Manage your Shopping Lists:With one tap you can quickly create and manage multiple shopping lists, whether it’s your weekly grocery list or something special based on a particular recipe. The ability to roam your shopping list between Windows 8 and Windows Phone makes it simple to always stay in sync regardless of the device you use.
Find the Perfect Drink:For the wine lovers and drink aficionados, the app offers a wine encyclopedia with information on over 1.5 million bottles of wine, 3.3 million tasting notes and hundreds of the most popular cocktail recipes. Browse cocktails by ingredient, flavor profile, glass type and more.
New: Introducing the Bing Health & Fitness app for Windows Phone
Health & Fitness is designed to be your all-in-one tool for wellness. The app brings together nutrition, fitness and medical information, hundreds of workouts and tools that can be customized to your specific needs so you can make smart choices for a healthier you.
Tailor the App to You:You can tailor the app to your preferences, interests and goals.
Track Activities & Nutrition:The Health & Fitness app has three trackers: Diet Tracker, Cardio Tracker and GPS Tracker. The Trackers are an easy and powerful way to gather information about your Activities and nutrition to make better decisions.
Diet Tracker: Think of the Diet Tracker as a food journal. Over 200,000 foods, including brand names, are available via partnerships with companies like FatSecret, that have full nutrition profiles and exercise equivalencies to bring the ‘cost’ of a dessert into new focus. The tracker includes weekly and monthly reports with goals that you can customize.
Cardio Tracker: The Cardio Tracker lets you keep track of all your cardio exercises, including time spent and calories burned. Like the Diet tracker, the Cardio Tracker provides a 7 day and 30 day analysis of workouts.
GPS Tracker: Now all you need to track your morning run is your Windows Phone. Launch the GPS tracker in the Health & Fitness app at the start of a run, and see the duration, distance, pace and calories burned. The run data automatically updates your cardio tracker.
Symptom Checker:The Symptom Checker is a unique and intuitive way to get information about possible conditions based on the symptoms you might be experiencing. The guide is not intended to be medical advice, but a helpful reference.
Fitness Instruction: Looking to get in shape? We’ve got you covered with step-by-step instructions and videos for over 1,000 exercises and workouts across strength training, yoga and Pilates. You can search or browse by body part (e.g. arms), equipment (e.g. dumbbells), duration, type and difficulty. Explore beginner to advanced yoga poses, or choose a 5 to 30 minute long workout with a focus on lower body toning, calm breathing, or improving flexibility. From Pilates to strength training, you’ll find the workout that best matches your goals.
Medical Lookup: How is endoscopy done? What is GERD? What does aspirin do and what are its side effects? Medical lookup gives you information about 1,500 conditions 600 procedures and 4,000 drugs (only US markets for now).
New: Introducing the Bing Travel app for Windows Phone
The Bing Travel app helps turns your travel inspiration into reality, providing destination guides, rich photos, expert reviews, and much more, right in the palm of your hand. Plan your next trip from hotels and flights to top attractions, or make last minute booking decisions after comparing prices from multiple sources.
Pinned Flights: Easily track your flight status with the Bing Travel app with pinned flights. Right from the tile on your home screen you can see the status of your flight including departure information and arrival terminal. You can search flights by flight number or if you don’t know it- you can search by arrival or departure airport.
Book Flights and Hotels:Search for hotels, read reviews, and book a room right from the phone app. Sort by price, class, proximity, or popularity. Find both round-trip and one-way flights based on price, distance, departure time, or number of stops.
Explore Destinations:You can get the full experience of your destination, down to the current weather conditions and currency conversion rates. Each destination provides both professional photos and travel photos. Check out nearby attractions, restaurants, and more.
Roaming and Personalization
We make it super easy to personalize what you want to see across the Windows 8 apps and Windows Phone apps. You only need to set your preferences once, and your favorite stuff will always be there. In the Finance app for example, when you setup your stock watch list on Windows 8, it will show up the same way on the Windows Phone. And it works the same way if you set it up on your phone – so no matter where you start, you don’t have to set it up all over again, changes and updates work the same way. So setup your favorite cities for weather, pick your favorite sports teams, chose the news topics you want to follow, and those things will be with you at your PC at work, on your Windows 8.1 tablet in the living room, or on your Windows Phone when you are on the go.
Here’s how it works.
Updated: Bing Finance app for Windows Phone
Keep an eye on your favorite stocks and funds in the Watchlist and the latest from the market on your Windows Phone. With this release, we are introducing ‘My Finance’ on Phone – the account aggregation feature to securely track your brokerage accounts in the Bing Finance app, including monitoring account balances, portfolio distribution, holdings transactions and more. In this release, My Finance works for investors in the US who have brokerage accounts with E*TRADE, Fidelity, Fidelity NetBenefits, Sharebuilder, Charles Schwab and TD Ameritrade.
Pin Your Favorites: You can pin your favorite stock to the start screen so you can keep tabs at a glance.
Real-Time Financial News:Stay up to date with real-time information from leading financial outlets including articles from the Wall Street Journal, Reuters, Bloomberg and many more.
Mortgage Calculator:Interested in a new home? We’ve added a mobile mortgage calculator so you can calculate monthly payments, get a graph view and see your remaining balance.
Updated: Bing Sports app for Windows Phone
Live Match-Ups:View live event coverage for NBA, NFL and all major soccer leagues.
Player Profiles: Get updates on your favorite players with dedicated profiles that include news stories, photos and social media updates from the sports stars.
Pin Your Favorites:You can pin your favorite team’s schedule to the Start screen so you can see their upcoming match details at a glance.
Personalize the News:You can customize the news section to showcase stories from your favorite team or league.
Updated: Bing News app for Windows Phone
Leading News Outlets: In addition to world class outlets including the Associated Press and Reuters we are adding the Wall Street Journal and the New York Teams to the list of sources. We have also enabled sharing so you can send an article via text, email or on your social network.
To try the apps out, head over to the Windows Phone Store and download the apps. You will also need to be on the latest version of Windows 8.1 to enable roaming between devices.
Now that Valentine’s Day is here, we thought it would be fitting to see what you were searching for when it came to matters of the heart. Below we have pulled together the top love related search trends of the year as well as our favorite Bing features to help you make the most of the day.
Searching for Love
Where people live may have something do with how romantic they are.According to the Bing index, the following 10 cities are where people are most likely to be conducting romantic searches.
1) Atlanta, Georgia
2) Washington DC
3) Detroit, Michigan
4) Dallas- Fort Worth, Texas
5) Salt Lake City, Utah
6) San Francisco, California
7) Columbus, Ohio
8) Los Angeles, California
9) Seattle, Washington
10) Indianapolis, Indiana
And on the flipside, here are the 5 cities where people are least likely to be searching for love.
1) Tampa Bay, Florida
2) Austin, Texas
3) Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
4) Grand Rapids, Michigan
5) St. Louis, Missouri
Top Dating Sites
We were interested in seeing which dating sites were most searched on Bing over the course of the last year. Here are the top 10 US sites:
1) Plenty of Fish
3) OK Cupid
4) Christian Mingle
Most Searched for Couples
While some couples blossomed and some split, you couldn’t stop searching this year. Victoria and David Beckham topped the list followed by the freshly engaged power couple Kim Kardashian and Kanye West.
1) Victoria and David Beckham
2) Kim Kardashian and Kanye West
3) Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth
4) Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
5) Faith Hill and Tim McGraw
6) Tom Brady and Gisele Bündchen
7) Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson
8) Kate Middleton and Prince William
9) Jay Z and Beyoncé
10) Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake
Now that we’ve got you in the spirit, here’s a quick overview of some quick tips to help plan a romantic night with that special someone.
Plan the Perfect Night with Bing Food & Drink app
Whether it’s the first time you’ve stepped into a kitchen, or you’re a seasoned chef, the Bing Food & Drink app is the perfect companion for your Valentine’s Day plans. The app offers instant access to a variety of recipes from top culinary publishers like AllRecipes, popular cookbooks and food bloggers like Food 52, with more being added every day, as well as signature recipes and first hand tips from world-renowned chefs like Wolfgang Puck and Tom Colicchio.Still need some inspiration for date night? Browse the recipe section and select Special Occasion to find dinner, dessert and drink ideas that will wow your special someone. Plus the app offers a wine encyclopedia with information on over 1.5 million bottles of wine, 3.3 million tasting notes and hundreds of the most popular cocktail recipes.
Get Gift Inspiration from Martha Stewart with Bing Boards
Looking for do-it-yourself gift ideas for your significant other? With Bing Boards, we surface compelling content from bloggers across the web including ideas from craft goddess Martha Stewart.
Get a Great Deal on Flowers with Bing Rewards
Just ahead of Valentine’s Day, for a limited time Bing Rewards is taking more than 80% off the $15 ProFlowers eCoupon for our members. Redeem before 2/15/2014 and you’ll enjoy this reward for only 100 credits, usually 525 credits.
Join Bing Rewards and start searching and earning. See the offer here.
One of the great things about technology - search in particular - is the chance to constantly explore where the world is headed. Parsing through current trends and dreaming up innovations that will be coming to light in the coming years can seem a lot like science fiction. So it was a natural fit when Sony Pictures asked us to come up with a concept for search in the not-too-distant future to showcase in the upcoming Robocop film (opening this week.)
Of course, all of us at Microsoft were huge fans of the original Robocop character, and we are excited to be a part of the project. Since the film is set in 2028 (and not, say, 3028), the team wanted a vision for Bing that was true to the story and innovations on the horizon, but still very much grounded in today’s reality.
From 2001: A Space Odyssey to the Minority Report there is a long precedent of amazing visions of what technology will look like in the future. Microsoft is working to solve some very hard problems around voice recognition, image recognition, dimensional displays and other “natural user inputs” like gestures and eye gaze. Yet, some of the biggest solutions in search are less visible, like understanding people’s intent and reducing the clutter of search results that we know distract people. We knew that we didn’t want to do something over the top like a 3-D holographic search engine that would disrupt the audience and take them out of the movie’s narrative, so we decided to start simply using elements of Bing today.
Our first sketch looked like this:
Building off the voice recognition work we have released for Bing on Xbox and Windows Phone, in this vision of search, a character can speak in natural language and instantly receive accurate and relevant results. We also needed to convey millions of results without overwhelming the display with a barrage of links. The solution was to have elements continuously scrolling in and search results updating in a living animated way. We also envisioned a 3D display with the most important things in the foreground. As we know that digital data is going to continue to explode at an exponential rate, we called for the search results tally to be constantly updating as new information arrives. Here’s a peak at where we landed: