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Kayak: Microsoft’s Bing Travel Search Is Too Similar

Travel search engine Kayak is accusing Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) of basically ripping off some of its features in its revamped search engine, which puts a heavy emphasis on travel search. And, indeed a quick look at Kayak and the Microsoft travel search offering — dubbed Bing Travel — shows that the two sites look strikingly alike, with similar ways to break down results (Click on the image to the left to see how both sites look). reports that Kayak sent Microsoft a “legal letter” last week saying that the design of Bing’s travel search was “confusing Kayak users.” Says Kayak chief marketing officer Robert Birge very diplomatically, “From the look and feel of their travel product, they seem to agree with our approach to the market.” Microsoft, however, has had a travel search engine for more than a year now, which has looked basically the same as the one it renamed Bing, so it’s not exactly clear what new features in the updated travel search engine Kayak is upset about.

A Microsoft spokeswoman denies the accusations and tells Wired that the company is “discussing the matter with Kayak.” Nevertheless, it’s a rare setback for Microsoft, which so far has seen very positive buzz around the relaunch of its search engine. A Kayak representative said Thursday that the company would not release the letter it had sent Microsoft.

2 Responses to “Kayak: Microsoft’s Bing Travel Search Is Too Similar”

  1. Willim Stewart

    Iam pissed that this crap bing was shoved into my computer without my permission. I think it reports back to MS your browsing habits, shopping preferences, It is as bad as Google which I also do not like.

    ms ahould send out a removal tool. I had to use a third psrty spyblocker to stop it communicating to MS

  2. I'd say that's quite a stretch on Kayak's part. How many ways can data actually be presented in a formatted manner? Look at most of the comparison shopping engine sites and you see similar formats for products listings. There is going to be some even more natural commonality when the product is travel.