As of today, searching the Web with Siri or Spotlight on iOS and macOS devices will show you results from Google, not Microsoft’s Bing search engine. This ends a Bing integration that was introduced in iOS 7 back in 2013.
Google was already the default search engine in Safari in both iOS and macOS, and Apple is positioning this as a move for consistency, though there may be other reasons that have not been disclosed. Switching to Google as the Web search provider for Siri, Search within iOS, and Spotlight on Mac will allow these services to have a consistent Web search experience with the default in Safari. Apple says to have strong relationships with Google and Microsoft and remain committed to delivering the best user experience possible.
Bing isn’t completely gone, though; Siri will still use Web image results from the service. Also, you can still ask Siri to “search Bing for Flatliners movie reviews,” for example, and you’ll get Bing results. However, they will now open in the Safari app instead of inside the Siri interface. Video results will come from YouTube. Web searches, meanwhile, will be provided by Google, while video searches will now rely on YouTube. This change could very well be a product of the rumoured $3 billion deal Google struck with Apple to make its search engine the default for queries from Apple products. Even though Google already has a massive market share of search traffic through Android and Chrome, the number of Apple users out there is sizable. Having them sent to Google results en masse still represents a lot of money Google, regardless of its success on other platforms.
This change is going live today, and it happens to be just in time for the launch of macOS High Sierra. All in all, it’s a great day for Google, but maybe not so much for Microsoft. So goodbye, Bing. Are you happy with the change? Head down to the comments section and let us know what you think!