Apple has ditched Bing for its Siri and Spotlight search results, instead moving to a Google-oriented experience. According to Apple, the motivation is consistency across various services, Google the default on Safari and other browsers.
“Switching to Google as the web search provider for Siri, Search within iOS and Spotlight on Mac will allow these services to have a consistent web search experience with the default in Safari,” said a statement from the company. “We have strong relationships with Google and Microsoft and remain committed to delivering the best user experience possible.”
Users will notice the results when Siri doesn’t know the answer to a question and provides search results instead. However, the images Siri provides still come from Bing, while video results use YouTube. It still doesn’t scream consistency, but Bing does provide better images at the moment.
Speaking of the matter, a Microsoft spokesperson said, “We value our relationship with Apple and look forward to continuing to partner with them in many ways, including on Bing Image Search in Siri, to provide the best experience possible for our customers. Bing has grown every year since its launch, now powering over a third of all the PC search volume in the U.S., and continues to grow worldwide. It also powers the search experiences of many other partners, including Yahoo (Verizon), AOL and Amazon, as well as the multi-lingual abilities of Twitter. As we move forward, given our work to advance the field of AI, we’re confident that Bing will be at the forefront of providing a more intelligent search experience for our customers and partners.”
Despite the positive outlook, there’s no denying that this a blow for the search engine. While users will likely be happy with the changes, Microsoft will likely see a significant hit to usage numbers.
Interestingly, the rollout comes after the release of iOS 11 but marks the release of High Sierra yesterday. If you’re a big fan of Microsoft’s search engine, you won’t be able to change it back, but you can ask Siri to Bing information rather than Google it.