Jamie Thomson

Thoughts, about stuff

Live Search – Only in America

with 5 comments

What do the following all have in common:

  • Cashback
  • URank
  • Photo backgrounds
  • Real-time news
  • Mobile cinema listings
  • Mobile traffic updates
  • Mobile Map collections
  • Speech recognition
  • Fuel prices

If you thought “they’re all search services offered by Microsoft” then you’d be half right. The rest of the answer is “that are only available in America”.

Check it out…


Cashback wants your attention, but only if you live in the US



URank/Viveri looks like an interesting experiment but I wouldn’t know because they won’t let me in to see



I’d love to see some nice artistic backgrounds on my search screen but alas someone (probably someone in the US) has deemed that I can’t:



News is rather important wouldn’t you say? Sadly not important enough if you don’t live with Uncle Sam:



Over to Live Search for Mobile. If you’re in the US you get a very busy menu and speech recognition as well:

 image image

Not so anywhere else:

 image image



You would think the fact that Google has a lower share of search in the US than anywhere else in the world might wake Microsoft up to the fact that launching their services in more than one country might be beneficial. Clearly they haven’t realised that.


Come on Microsoft – if your search engine doesn’t give us features then you shouldn’t complain when nobody uses it!



P.S. The Windows Mobile screenshots shown here were taken using the rather spiffing (and free) MyMobiler.

UPDATE, 28th April 2009: I’ve just thought of another one. Live Search 411 is a search service which you use by calling it.Again, US only!


Written by Jamiet

April 6, 2009 at 8:05 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

5 Responses

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  1. ya, which is super lame. the search revelency is very poor in other countries’ setting.No wonder why they fucked up in market share, even if they brought Yahoo in 2007. I won’t help them at all if they still acting this way.


    April 6, 2009 at 9:26 pm

  2. Someone blogged recently about the President wanting to control the Internet. Could this be some of the problem, I wonder? Just a random thought!


    April 6, 2009 at 10:24 pm

  3. Unfortunately it’s not only the search engine, so much parts of other Microsoft services are US-only too.I don’t think "he President wanting to control the Internet" has anything to do with it. The usual reasons are because their lawyers cannot support laws worldwide, or because third parties providing the services (data providers, sponsors) are not active (enough) outside of th US.


    April 6, 2009 at 11:39 pm

  4. Or their orgchart and how they arrange their regional office (don’t know how though).Maybe they’re not really motivated to add values to such services like online contents and focused too much on getting great sales figure.Same thing as Zune, not available anywhere else.


    April 7, 2009 at 5:32 am

  5. I think this has more to do with the mentality of their CEO – Steve Ballmer. He is American-centric to the bone. He runs Microsoft like it is a GM or a Ford (which his father was an executive at), just with better fiscal management, but still very much as an old military-industrial complex.


    April 13, 2009 at 8:18 am

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