Bing, Microsoft's "decision engine," is wading into the entertainment realm today with the revelation that searches for music, lyrics, games, TV shows, and movies will get a new special sauce treatment from here on out. You'll now be able to play 100 basic games right in your search results, along with full-length streaming of songs (first time only, 30 seconds thereafter) from a 5 million-strong catalog. The latter is augmented with "one-click" purchases from the Zune Marketplace (directly through the web, no need to launch the app), Amazon, or iTunes music libraries. Movie tickets are promised to be similarly easy to buy, though the biggest new feature might well be the Bing.com/entertainment page, which acts as a portal into your media consumption with a selection of the most popular content in each category. It doesn't look terribly different from the iTunes storefront, but given its partnership with Apple's digital music shop, we doubt Bing's Entertainment section is perceived as much of a threat -- not yet, anyway. As to that other search giant, Google's been said to already be putting together a music store of its own. Man, all this integration and interconnectedness -- just where will it end?
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This evening, at an entertainment-focused event in Los Angeles, Bing launched Bing Entertainment, a new vertical on Bing.com. Bing Entertainment specializes in music, movies, TV and games – making it easy for people to access everything entertainment, including television shows, song lyrics, movie trailers, gaming cheats and much more. A survey from Bing.com reveals that 76% of people want one comprehensive resource to help them cut thru the clutter and get to movies, music, TV and games information faster. Bing Entertainment visually organizes all the entertainment information you care about and brings it together in one place, helping you make better entertainment decisions. Key features include:
* Bing Music: Bing lets you discover and sample more than 5 million songs and lyrics for free. Bing offers the most complete search results including songs, artists, albums, and hard-to-find lyrics. People can play songs in-line and purchase with one-click from iTunes, Amazon or Zune. Zune Pass subscribers can already stream unlimited full tracks from Zune.net, but now all subscribers can purchase any of the millions of pure MP3s from the Zune catalogue directly over the web from Zune.net – anytime, anywhere.
* Bing Games: Bing now helps the 175 million gamers in the US beat the game. Bing is the only search engine that offers more than 35,000 aggregated reviews, cheats, and walkthroughs for games. And, Bing makes it easy to play nearly 100 top casual games in-line, like Bejewled, Hexix, and Bubble Town, without worrying about registering, getting spyware, or being overloaded with ads.
* Bing TV: People can now access one of the largest catalogs of videos on the Web, from partners like Hulu, Viacom, CBS and more – all in one place. Bing offers more than 1,500 shows and 20,000 full TV episodes, TV listings, and easy access to episodes, reviews, images, and more. People can find their favorite show in HD, check out user reviews and invite friends to watch using Facebook, Twitter, or other social tools.
* Bing Movies: Bing helps people decide which movie to see with visual search, customer reviews, in-line movie trailers and highlight videos, one-click purchasing and more. Easily plan an evening out with integrated Bing Maps, which can help people find parking, local restaurants and other information.
Bing Entertainment is available at Bing.com/entertainment. Screenshots and a Fact Sheet regarding Bing Entertainment are available at Microsoft News Center. For more info about Bing Entertainment check out the Bing blog post, and to learn about the other Bing.com announcements, check out the Bing Blog.