Dave (cerealnumber) wrote,

A Brief History of Microsoft's Live Search's New Domain Bing

Logo for bing! from 2003 via The Wayback MachineLogo for BING* from 2006 via The Wayback MachineKimberly Saia's flickr photo of the Microsoft bing search logo.
When I heard that Live Search is now Bing one of my initial thoughts was how'd they get that domain name given the unavailability of pronouncable four letter .COM domain names. Well, the names been used in the past. Here now, via the Wayback Machine is a brief, somewhat speculative, and ultimately anticlimactic history of bing.com:

  • 2003 July: The first archived version of bing.com features "bing! is a small device (e.g., possibly even a small Band-Aid(R)-like sticker!) that vibrates when a person's cell phone rings." I can't recall 2003 cell phones, were they big enough to require this device?
  • 2004 August: Site for the same device is rewritten and looks much better, IMHO.
  • 2006 June: The domain is now parked by easyDNS. I guess the "bing!" device didn't work out?
  • 2006 November: Its now "BING*" and they won't say what they're working on ("we're still in stealth mode") but they are hiring C#/.NET developers.
  • 2007 January: And they're gone. Without even exiting stealth mode. Too bad, I liked their logo. Their domain is now for sale...
  • 2007 February: Looks like EasyMail buys the domain and offers a physical mailing service in Australia: "By simply clicking a button on your computer, mail is beamed electronically to a bing post office. Your mail is automatically printed, folded, enveloped and dispatched into the Australia Post network the very same day."
  • Present: Now its the new home for Live Search of course.

The new name reminds me of the show Friends. Also, I hope they get a new favicon - I don't enjoy the stretched 'b' nor its color scheme.

Tags: archive, bing, dns, domain, history, microsoft, search, technical
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