Microsoft planning strategic deal with Chinese search giant Baidu

By Tom Warren, on 14th May 11 3:00 pm with 13 Comments

Bing China

Microsoft is planning to announce a new strategic deal with Chinese search engine Baidu, according to reports.

The software giant is expected to close a deal soon with Baidu according to sources who spoke to Details of the deal are not immediately available but it’s thought that Baidu will take control of the paid advertising on Bing’s Chinese site. Baidu is expected to use Bing’s search results for its English language version. Baidu currently dominates the Chinese search engine market with 75.8% market share. Google China holds 19.2%, leaving just 5% for other search engines like Bing.

Microsoft’s Bing search engine has been making significant gains in the U.S. market recently. Bing now accounts for 14% of all U.S. searches. LiveSide notes that Baidu and Microsoft entered into a similar strategic partnership in 2006. The previous agreement centred around Baidu’s paid search listings, allowing them to appear on the search results pages of Chinese versions of Microsoft web sites like MSN and Live Search (now Bing).

Microsoft clearly wants to strengthen its market share in China. Google threatened to pull out of China after a gmail cyber attack in late 2009. Google eventually backed down but the outburst has soured relations between the search giant and China. Microsoft could use this to their advantage to pick up market share in a vital market.

  • GP007

    This could be big, everyone wants to get a good foothold in China, if this deal helps push Bing ahead that’d be another knife in Google.   Hope this works out and pays off as well. 

    • Manish

      MS should now focus on non US markets.  Good move MS 

  • Kane Gao

    I’m kind of guessing Microsoft is outsourcing Bing search to Baidu, just like  Bing powering Yahoo right now. You guys should have get a look at Bing Chinese. The site is like something from late 1990s. No “decision engine” functions, not at all. Just a lame standard Google-ish search with fewer return results than competitors. :-S

    I’m seriously hoping Microsoft could bring Bing Chinese up to the game (about 50% as good as the US counterpart will do) before WP7 formally comes to China. Nokia has MASSIVE market share here. Will be a nightmare if all those Nokia phones are bound with a lame version of Bing.

    • BI1000

      i just saw it is ugly. 

    • Anonymous

      That’s how it is for most of the world, Microsoft needs to start pushing the non-beta  version of Bing to the rest of the world.

  • Benjy91

     I hope Microsoft realize that “Bing” means “Disease” in Chinese.

    • Jhonny Lopez


    • Chun Yin

      Actually, phonetically, “Bing” is closer to “Ice” than it is to “Disease”.

      Heck, considering how many words which have a similar pronounciation to “Bing” in Chinese, your point is pretty much moot…

    • FMH

      What does Google means in Chinese? 

    • Kane Gao

      Bing Chinese name “必应” means “(for every request) there will always be an answer”. Quite a nice one, if the search engine lives up to the name that is…

      Google registered a bunch of Chinese name all sounding weird, finally settled on the one called “谷歌”, means… “grain song”. I kind of picture a legion of happy farmers harvesting a vast grain field and singing aloud to celebrate the great yield…

    • Anonymous

      well i bet, going by tones, it wont mean that. mandarin tones make everything so complicated. but they were fun when someone explained me them.  

  • Avatar X

    This ought to be good. Now they only need a deal with Yandex. After that they would only need to release full bing versions all around the world to really put fire under Google.  

  • steroids

    Baiding perhaps ?