Google wins the war against Bing images

Google's new 'sort by subject' is the latest escalation in a pitched battle of pictures

In this week of big headlines for both Google and Microsoft, the quiet escalation in the war between Google images and Bing images has gone virtually unnoticed... until now.

On Monday, Google officially announced a new "sort by subject" feature in Google images. It's a pretty nifty way to find what you want, especially when you don't know exactly what you're looking for. Google uses the example of looking for a certain kind of a dog when you don't know the name of the breed. Search for "dog" and click on "sort by subject" and Google returns rows of dog images sorted by breed (with the exception of the "cute dog" row).

I thought it would be more fun to try searching for something like "search engines." Interestingly, when sorted by subject in Google images, the first row of images is "Yahoo." Google gives itself the fifth row treatment-what a good sport.

Without sorting by subject, the same search returns a long, scrolling mish-mash of different search engines' logos and magnifying glass icons.

Notice that those unsorted results look an awful lot more like the results the same search returns on Bing images.

I still really like the cleaner look of Bing, but for practically all purposes that I can imagine, Google's new sorted image results are more useful than anything the snappier-looking Microsoft search currently offers. That's significant because it means that Google has gone from playing catch up with Bing Images, to ripping off the Redmond engine's more visual appeal last summer, to adding sorting to create what I can now definitely say is the best image search around.

Yet again, Microsoft is the slower horse in the race, but Google only gained this new advantage by basically copying Bing's design last summer. So, while I can confidently declare Google the winner in the image search war, I can't say they did it while sticking to the company's "don't be evil" edict.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags searchYahooGoogleMicrosoftinternetsearch engines

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Eric Mack

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?