Elizabeth Warren took a shot at Microsoft’s Bing search engine, but she got one thing wrong

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) takes part in the Washington Ideas Forum in Washington, October 1, 2015.

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U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) takes part in the Washington Ideas Forum in Washington, October 1, 2015.
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REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

When presidential hopeful Elizabeth Warren wrote about her plan to break up major tech companies on Friday, she took an all-too-familiar jab at a particular Microsoft product.

“Aren’t we all glad that now we have the option of using Google instead of being stuck with Bing?” Warren said.

The shot fired at Bing was Warren’s attempt to demonstrate the good that can come from healthy competition. (She cited Microsoft’s anti-trust suit in the 1990s as helping “clear a path” for companies like Google emerge.)

But Warren something quite wrong here: Bing isn’t that bad these days!

In fact, after switching to Bing entirely for one week, I could hardly tell the difference in search quality between Google and Bing.

Read more: We compared Google Search with Bing and DuckDuckGo to find the best search engine out there – and the race was closer than we expected

Sure, certain design choices differ (some prefer Bing’s design, though, especially when it comes to its video thumbnail layout). But the overall feel and performance of two search engines are strikingly similar.

A huge majority of Americans share Warren’s sentiment of Google’s search prowess. As of February 2019, Google accounted for over 88% of search queries across all devices in the US, compared to Bing’s 6%. I too use Google, even after finding no noticeable difference in search quality when testing out Bing.

But still, Warren got it wrong when taking a jab at Bing on Friday.

Sure, Microsoft’s search engine was noticeably worse say, 10 years ago. But today, Bing is essentially on par with Google Search.

So, no Senator Warren. We’re not “all glad.”

If we all needed to switch to Bing tomorrow, I’d wager that few would notice any significant difference.

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