Bing is, and has been for quite some time, the only viable challenger to Google Search. But even though some notable progress has been made by Microsoft in the US market, the global share still leaves a bit to be desired.

All that could change with the closer integration of the search service in the modern versions of Windows and Windows Phone (along with iOS and Mac OS X).

And Cortana, Microsoft’s digital voice assistant.

The Smart Search feature that is available in Windows 8.1, for instance, uses Bing to provide both online and offline results when searching for files. All these facts, analysts believe, will positively impact the bottom line of the service in the very near future.

Trefin investors, in a note to investors on Thursday, explained:

“We estimate that the service has around 2.6% global search market share, but we expect this to expand over our forecast period with Bing as the default search engine on the OS. This improvement will contribute to an increase in Bing’s market share, which we think will reach around 4% by the end of our forecast period.”

Obviously, forecasts are just that — grand predictions that may or may not come true. It wasn’t all that long ago when IDC said that they expected Windows Phone to grab 30% of the market by 2015.

But fact is that the future of Bing remains bright, at home and across the globe.

That is, as long as Microsoft continues investing in the service, develops required new features, and promotes it perfectly. Still a long way to go, but Bing is getting there, slowly and steadily, it is getting there alright — the only viable challenger.

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  • terry10

    Slowly but surely. 4% is a substantial enough figure to keep pushing Bing forward and really throwing a challenge at Google.

  • Ray C

    I expect it to be much higher than 4%. It’s not everywhere right now. There places where it is, it’s a lot closer to Google than 4%. People are demanding Bing and Bing services across the globe.

    • Wayne S

      You’re right, but don’t underestimate Google’s share. I’d be shocked if it was under 80%. It’s so engrained in society at this point.

      • Ray C

        I’m for certain it’s not under 80%, but so much about Microsoft is US-Only. That’s one of the biggest complaints, with the exceptions being Windows Phone and Surface. With the popularity of their devices, I think BING will grow much faster than some think once MS is 100% International