As you may know, Microsoft and Nokia have entered a strategic partnership, which will see Nokia producing Windows Phone platform smartphones. More on that here.
One interesting part of the announcement that hasn't gotten a whole lot of attention is that Bing will power Nokia's search services across the company's devices and services, and Microsoft adCenter will power search advertising across them as well.
We have really exciting news for you today! Together Nokia and Microsoft plan to bring new and unique experiences: Nokia Maps + Bing + XBox + Office 360 = awesome possibilities for the Nokia Windows Phone
When Microsoft announced Windows Phone 7, we suggested that it could be one of Google's biggest threats, and one of Bing's best chances for significant growth. Lackluster sales of the initial devices kind of played that notion down a bit, but this new announcement could breathe new life into it.
"Mobile is critical to Bing's success, and providing the best possible search experience on Windows Phone 7 is an important part of our strategy," a Microsoft spokesperson told us in November.
Bing's market share did jump last month, according to Hitwise numbers, and the recent Google vs. Bing debate has no doubt generated some new interest in Bing.
Perhaps Bing's biggest obstacle is the way Google has simply become a harder-to-break habit than smoking. Still, Bing reminded the industry how far behind it is in some ways, when it announced personalization of search results based on history and Google - both something Google has been doing for quite some time, but to be fair, this does show that Bing is improving.
Habits are a lot easier to break when the alternative becomes the default. Now, Microsoft just really needs this partnership with Nokia to put up significant competition in the mobile device space.