Microsoft Offered to Sell Bing to Apple in 2018

Within the context of the United States Department of Justice’s lawsuit against Google for alleged market monopolization, documents highlight that Microsoft approached Apple no fewer than six times between 2009 and 2020, suggesting that Bing be designated as the default search engine for Safari browser.

Microsoft has persistently proposed to Apple the adoption of Bing as the default search engine for the Safari browser. Apple’s upper echelons disclosed that in the absence of a partnership with Google, Apple would have ventured into developing its search engine.

Microsoft Bing GPT-4

Documentation furnished by Google elucidates Apple’s decision to select Google as the default search engine for the Safari browser, attributing it to concerns over the quality of Microsoft’s Bing search engine, which led Apple to decline Microsoft’s service offering.

Further, these documents cite Apple’s Senior Vice President of Services, Eddy Cue, critiquing Bing’s service as lacking in ideal qualities, and positing that there was no imperative for Apple to invest in creating a search engine service, thereby rendering collaboration with Google as the most judicious approach.

Nevertheless, it was also disclosed that Eddy Cue had intimated that absent collaboration with Google, Apple would have initiated the development of its search engine.

In September of the preceding year, Bloomberg News reported that around 2020, Microsoft contemplated divesting the Bing search engine to Apple, thereby positioning it as the default search service on iOS devices. However, Apple opted to maintain its alliance with Google, which entails annual payments of several billion dollars from Google to Apple, ensuring Google Search’s status as the default search service on iOS devices and leveraging the market share of iOS devices to augment the usage proportion of Google Search services.