Google Image Search vs Bing Image Search – Who is the Winner?

If you are among those who have been depending mainly on Google Image Search for the pictures to be inserted in your slide shows, blogs, etc., things won't be the same after you have completed reading this article. Since Bing was launched on 1st of this month, there has been a lot of buzz surrounding it and its threat to Google. Well, let's see where Bing's Image Search stands in comparison to Google Image Search.

Google Image Search vs Bing

If you are among those who have been depending mainly on Google Image Search for the pictures to be inserted in your slide shows, blogs, etc., things won’t be the same after you have completed reading this article.

Since Bing was launched on 1st of this month, there has been a lot of buzz surrounding it and its threat to Google. Well, let’s see where Bing’s Image Search stands in comparison to Google Image Search.

Let’s see the differences under the following criteria:

1. Search Accuracy

Basis: The relevance to the searched term and the quality of the first 15 images returned by both the search engines.

While Google was good as ever, Bing was right on target almost every time, as in to exclaim: BINGo!! That’s what I was looking for. (In fact, I gave Bing Image search a try only when simple search terms like – ‘follow on facebook’ and ‘hello’ forced me to go to the 3rd page of Google Images.)

2. User Interface

Basis: Ease of use, including that of the additional image sorting options.

Google’s additional image sorting options on the top bar aren’t that obvious. On the other hand, Bing has dedicated a full left column to it, leave apart its elegant look and “show similar images” option below every image on hovering.


Moreover, when it comes to pagination, Bing Image Search has none !! Surprised? 🙂 You just need to keep scrolling down till you find what you want. That reduces search time drastically.


3. Image sorting options

This is one field where Bing has clearly surpassed Google. The “Show similar Images” option below every image on hovering works like a charm. Its other options like: sort by Size, Layout, Color, Style, People appears to be more efficient and useful than the fewer: sort by size, content and color options provided by Google.

Moreover, Bing offers 4 Image viewing options: ” Zoom Small, Medium, Large and Show Image details”  (top right corner).

Even while viewing a particular image in Bing, you can see the related images displayed in the left column giving a Youtube like feel for Images.



Though in some aspects, like searching for clip arts and line drawings,  Google image search is still unique, its very evident that Bing has done its homework really well. As far as Image search is concerned, Bing deserves a pat on the back for raising the bar.

With Google known for its simplicity and obsession for statistics rather than looks, its interesting to see how Microsoft has made a thorough analysis of all the possible weaknesses of Google Image Search and tried to overcome them in style. Lets see what changes Bing forces onto Google. 🙂

As I submit this query of mine: “Whether Bing is the Google Killer?” to: Time and Statistical data and leave you with a small screencast (prepared only for you),  I would love to hear your views.

[Editor’s Note: This post is submitted by our guest blogger Devajyoti Guin. He is a 24 year old doctor by profession who is trying his best to live up to his passions: the 2nd being Computers. This is his first post on Devils Workshop.

If you, too would like to write for Devils Workshop, please check this. Details about our revenue sharing programs are here.]


Gautam June 8, 2009

When Germany made a copy of a tank of Russia in world war II, it was proved to be more advanced. But when it came into the battle, it had problems!!
(Just saw on discovery channal :P)

rajat June 8, 2009

off topic but why we use image search ?

Rahul Bansal June 16, 2009

To search images! 😛
Actually many bloggers need to put images in their post.
Sometimes you just want to “see” something.

venkat June 8, 2009

But Google does warn image may subject to copyright where Bing not mentions about copyright for images.

dev June 8, 2009

@ Gautam and @ rajat,
Thanks for your comments…

@Gautam: Very true and I completely agree with you… and I am sure you must have come across several facts too proving the reverse to be true… for eg., the NASA’s eventual success though Sputnik (USSR) was the first to rule the space while US failed miserably. 😛

dev June 8, 2009

Hi! venkat, That’s am important issue. Thanks for bringing it up… Fortunately, bing gives a small warning too at the left extreme bottom of every search page.

Take a look : 🙂

dev June 8, 2009

Hey rajat, come on… whats the inner meaning of your diplomatic query. How can I help you?

venkat June 8, 2009

It’s my mistake,I should have observed clearly anyway thanks for clarifying it,but it does listed at the bottom of the page very difficult to notice unless you have to really concentrated searching for copyright issues.Google does show caution about copyright under each image where bing not.

hemant June 8, 2009

Try searching the word “sex” in bing……….it doesn’t return any result for one of the most searched terms in India: sex. However, if you tell the search engine that you’re from the USA or any one of the European countries as users can easily change country without even logging in and bingo! several links are returned. If you say you are from China or an Arabian country, or Hong Kong or Singapore, again, no luck. Why so??

Rahul Bansal June 16, 2009

All big sites serve different contents based on country of visitor.
For example, in China, Google search is completely different and returns no or different results for queries like “democracy”, “human rights”, etc

Rahul June 9, 2009

bing image search is good.. keep scrolling and when you move cursor url and all display.

dev June 9, 2009

True venkat 🙂

@ Rahul : I personally found Bing to be performing good too… What matters to me is ‘search results’, graphics and all are only bonus, and I made Bing my default search for images after some really good results and didn’t repent till now.

Rahul June 9, 2009

yes, dev i added in my opera Speed dial next google. also, Acuracy required in search.

rajat June 9, 2009

just thinking what other people’s keyword in image search;for me,my keyword is my name [bura ho rajat tokas ka,most result shows him];
and my favorite actress [it changes with time now a days it is Minissha Lamba :)]; and some time for jhakkas cover photo of my project ! what yours ?

Albert June 10, 2009

They already did good job in Live Image search Now It is improved in Bing Image Search…

dev June 17, 2009

🙂 Rajat…

My keywords are usually related to the Project topics for which powerpoint slideshows need to be prepared… The reason being the same as Rahul mentioned above : People want too “see” something – only text usually turns out to be boring… Isn’t it. 🙂

dev June 17, 2009

@ hemant : Am sure Rahul made it very clear.. to add.. The algorithm of Bing search is quite different from Google. Manually setting the location to various places in the world, i.e. switching from UK to US changes Bing significantly. There’s at least three very different versions of Bing right now, and depending on where you are, your Bing experience will be very different. A bit complicated. Let’s see if it works.

Hi to Rahul Bansal too… Gr8 job.

sendhil July 18, 2009

Google is there to stand, bing will bingo with the time.

I got fed up when i searched for images in bing, bingo, there i again move to google.

CryptBala September 22, 2009

Google actually sucks… still in the stone age.. BING simply rocks.

Raki November 18, 2009

off topic abit, if u say google is stone age than other search engiine would be what??? monkeys?

but back to topic, I personally believe bing did a great job. But i dont think google will let that go. but it shall give google a better competitor to competitive with than having no enemy at their level. Actually in their Labs, google has launched new tools on image search that also makes it a bit more interesting as well. Google has not yet failed me on content searching and its has a faster response than bing does. this maybe due to my ISP. But i happy with both of them and hope this competition will bring better result for us as the consumer

prabhakaran.j August 10, 2010

while starting of the bing, the image search had option when we mouse over to the image it will get zoom little bit… but now its not there.. why they removed this option?

Raptor Jesus September 29, 2012

Bing image search sucks imo for what I mainly use image search for… memes. When mousing over it barely enlarges them. yes there is an option to click for more images at other sizes but it takes you off corse with 200 of the same images. i just want to mouse over and get an image large enough to read. i dont need all of these other useless and stupid features. In the end Google 1 bing 0.