Facebook has dropped Microsoft’s search engine, Bing, to focus on its own search offerings. Facebook released its own search tool on Monday that allows users to search through and quickly find past comments and other content posted by friends on Facebook. In the past, the company’ search results also included links to websites that were provided by Bing. This step by Facebook indicates that it is starting to find a way to develop its own web search technology in order to compete with rival Google.
A Facebook spokesperson confirmed the following move to Reuters:
“We’re not currently showing Web search results in Facebook Search because we’re focused on helping people find what’s been shared with them on Facebook. We continue to have a great partnership with Microsoft in lots of different areas.”
Mark Zuckerberg has indicated that search is one of Facebook’s key strategic growth initiatives. As Zuckerberg noted at an event in July 2014, there were more than 1 billion search queries on Facebook every day and that the enormous amount of information users share within Facebook could eventually replace the need to search the Web for answers to certain questions.
In October 2007, Microsoft invested 240 million in Facebook for a 1.65% stake in the company. Part of the agreement meant that Microsoft provided banner ads on Facebook’s website for international markets. In 2010, Facebook stopped using the banner ads to take more control over its advertising business.
Microsoft has yet to comment on this development.