Verizon picks MSFT search, gets ready for Kindle killers

Verizon picks MSFT search, gets ready for Kindle killers

Summary: Between the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas and an investor conference in Arizona, Verizon Wireless is making headlines today on issues ranging from a mobile search deal to plans for Kindle killers to Monday morning quarterbacking about the launch of the Blackberry Storm.Reuters is reporting that Verizon Wireless has chosen Microsoft to provide search services for its cell phone subscribers over search competitors Yahoo and Google.

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Between the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas and an investor conference in Arizona, Verizon Wireless is making headlines today on issues ranging from a mobile search deal to plans for Kindle killers to Monday morning quarterbacking about the launch of the Blackberry Storm.

Reuters is reporting that Verizon Wireless has chosen Microsoft to provide search services for its cell phone subscribers over search competitors Yahoo and Google. At a Citigroup conference, Verizon chief executive Ivan Seidenberg said that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer would announce the deal during his keynote speech at CES tonight but provided no other details because it was Ballmer's announcement. The matter came up as Seidenberg talked about the growth in data services on mobile devices, compared to voice services.

Of course, as mobile phones become more like computing devices with standalone applications, users are less dependent on the defaults: things like browsers and tools such as search engines. Sure, Microsoft won - but that doesn't mean I have to use it. Google, for example, has a nice mobile search app for smartphones such as the Blackberry and iPhone, as well as a mobile version that can run on a mobile Web connection. Still, it's a big score for Microsoft to be the default, as some people will simply use what they're given (which explains why so many people continue to use Internet Explorer for PC web browsing.)

During the same conference, Seidenberg was asked his opinion about the launch of the Blackberry Storm and specifically the problems that plagued it. Interestingly, he awkwardly paused before saying that he didn't want to "throw my partner under the bus" but then proceeded to do just that by saying that Verizon could have sold a lot more Storms had there been more of them to sell. Spinning it forward, he said that the company is caught up now and have the devices to meet the demand. Overall, he thought the launch was "successful."

Finally, a Verizon executive has hinted that the company is positioned to work with companies who will launch competitors to Amazon's Kindle this year. Users would be able to download content such as books and newspapers over the wireless network. Tony Lewis, who runs a program that helps third party vendors certify their products to work on Verizon's network, told Reuters in a pre-CES interview that he believes mnufacturers will still roll out products - even non-essentials like e-readers - in this turbulent economy. From the Reuters story:

He said that brisk sales of Kindle - which costs $359 on Amazon.com where buyers are told they have to wait seven to nine weeks for their device to ship -- showed there were still consumers out there who were willing to spend on wireless devices even in a tough economy.

"I just don't see us using the economy as an excuse to say there's not growth here," Lewis said. "Even in a down environment I believe there are consumer electronics providers that are ready to do business to get their products to market in 2009."

Topics: Mobility, Browser, Microsoft, BlackBerry, Verizon

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11 comments
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  • Yet another reason not to use the NOTwork

    As if the mediocre NOTwork quality was enough. Now they partner with the also-ran in search?

    Glad I'm not on the NOTwork.
    itguy08
    • mediocre NOTwork?

      But of course, you thought that it was AT&T or T-Mobile that partnered with Microsoft. No, it was Verizon.

      Now the best carrier uses the best serach.

      Too bad for you.
      GuidingLight
      • MS Search is used less than YouTube search.

        MS Live is an also-ran in every sense of the word. In terms of usage Google has them beat by far.

        As for Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint aren't much for competition. Actually, all of them suck, so finding the "better" one depends mostly on how strong the signal is where you live.
        T1Oracle
      • Best search?

        In global usage, Microsoft has less than 5% with the combines assets of MSN Search and Live Search (2.96% and 1.96% respectively). That is less than half those that use Yahoo search (10.43%) globally. So, best is 3rd and 5th place in usage?
        B.O.F.H.
      • re: mediocre NOTwork?

        [i]Now the best carrier uses the best serach.[/i]


        LOL! I hope you don't mean that.

        Who would expect Verizon to partner on search with the creators of Android? It's got nothing to do with quality.





        :)
        none none
      • Wow ??? I sure hope LostLight isn't an Accountant . . .

        Read the numbers and weep... Bawwaawaa.

        .
        Basic Logic
      • YESS!!

        I love both companies so I have to agree...Best Network hands down.
        likeabite
  • Kindle

    in other words Verison is gonna make a cheap device charge an arm and leg to use it to get information and that is gonna kill the kindle?
    Monosdeja
  • killers?

    Does everything that has to come out be a [b]fill in the blank[/b] killer? This is as bad as when everything was [b]e[/b] this or [b]e[/b] that. Or as Apples [b]i[/b] this or [b]i[/b] that.

    p.s. I see one more reference to something being a [b]killer[/b] I'm just going to bypass the article(s).
    Arm A. Geddon
  • Here comes the anti-MS crew who is green with envy...again nt.

    nt.
    transposeIT
  • RE: Verizon picks MSFT search, gets ready for Kindle killers

    I have Verizon FIOS at home, but AT&T took over Cingular on my cell-phone. Big Deal...
    As far as the Kindle is concerned, I have one, I use it daily, and it's like my guns; Cold, Dead Hands.
    OR, when the batteries die and leak all over the guts and I can't get it fixed, so I HAVE to replace it. Such as what happened with my ComPAQ Pocket PC.
    So much for hi-tech mini-toys. But the Kindle IS very nice, although not as versatile as the Pocket PC is (my wife still has hers, so we tend to grab both Kindle/Mobipocket versions, and MS Reader .lit files of all the eBooks we buy/beg/otherwise acquire!), so I wish I still had the Pocket PC.
    jkratzer3