Study suggests Microsoft’s ‘Bing-it-on’ claims are false

Brad Reed

Microsoft Bing Advertising Claims Criticism
Microsoft Bing Advertising Claims Criticism

Surprise! It turns out that people who take Microsoft’s “Bing it on” challenge don’t actually prefer Bing to Google by a rate of 2-to-1. Yale Law School professor Ian Ayres, writing over at Freakonomics, says that he and his students recently conducted their own third-party studies using Microsoft’s own “Bing it on” website to determine whether Internet users really did think that Bing retrieved better search results than Google when presented with a Coke/Pepsi-style “blind taste test.” The results, Ayres found, actually showed the opposite.

[More from BGR: New website instantly checks nearby Apple Stores for available iPhone 5s stock]

“To the contrary of Microsoft’s claim, 53% of subjects preferred Google and 41% Bing (6% of results were ‘ties’),” he writes. “This is not even close to the advertised claim that people prefer Bing ‘nearly two-to-one.’  It is misleading to have advertisements that say people prefer Bing 2:1 and also say join the millions of people who’ve taken the Bing-It-On challenge, if, as in our study, the millions of people haven’t preferred Bing at a nearly a 2:1 rate.”

[More from BGR: Qualcomm exec calls Apple’s 64-bit iPhone 5s processor a ‘gimmick’]

Previous research has suggested that while Google’s brand strength does account for some of the reason consumers overwhelmingly use it over Bing, the bias in favor of the Google brand name isn’t nearly enough to account for the entire gap between the two search engines.

This article was originally published on

Related stories

Windows 8.1 now available for preorder, complete with Start button

Microsoft may take a page from Samsung's playbook with multiple Surface models

Windows 7 adoption still growing at a faster rate than Windows 8