Microsoft has deepened its integration with Facebook to offer more socially refined results through its Bing search engine to tackle Google's search engine algorithm.
The present integration is an extension of an earlier announcement by Microsoft and Facebook in Oct. 2010 to make Internet search more social.
Microsoft in its Bing blog said the new feature in Bing will bring the Friend Effect to search. The idea was based on the premise that the best advice comes from friends and relatives. Bing takes this assumption to next level by integrated clues received from a users' social circle to rank the page.
The blog explains the working of the feature as: New features make it easier to see what your Facebook friends 'like' across the Web, incorporate the collective know-how of the Web into your search results, and begin adding a more conversational aspect to your searches. Decisions can now be made with more than facts, now the opinions of your trusted friends and the collective wisdom of the Web.
If a user is looking for news, content and sites, Bing will immediately showcase the sites, content and news that a user's Facebook friends have liked. The search incorporates the thumbs-up like from friends. Bing also throws up the faces of up to three of users' friends who like the search as well.
Microsoft has also coined a term Collective IQ which brings in the opinions from across the web when searching for information in which one's friends do not hold command. Thus, the search takes into account trending topics, articles and Facebook fan pages to further refine the search.
Microsoft took a swipe at Google's search algorithm strategy as it underscored its Collective IQ feature. It said: Search is better when it's not just based on math and algorithms, but also infused with the opinions of people.
Microsoft's strategy is to harness Facebook's 500 million users who are a treasure trove of information which can be mined further to add a social context to its search engine. Facebook can leverage Microsoft's search engine to become more entrenched in users search workflow.
CNET reported that Microsoft estimates that there are around 3.5 million sites which use like buttons and about 30 billion pieces of content are shared each month. Microsoft is attempting to mine these interactions gain a distinctive competitive advantage against Google.
Currently Google rules the search engine roost with 65.4 percent share in the U.S., according to Comscore, while Bing has 14.1 percent share and Yahoo has 15.9 percent share.
Here are videos explaining how the Facebook and Bing integration works: