I found something that MSN Live beats Google at. It’s Image Search. If you’ll watch this video by Stefan Weitz of the MSN Live Search team, you’ll see the cool features offered by MSN Live on its Image Search feature.
Stefan isn’t Matt Cutts and there are some weaknesses in the video presentation, but it does do a decent job of highlighting some of the cool features of MSN Live’s Image Search, such as:
- Search by image size
- Aspect Ratio
- Image Style (photograph or illustration)
- Color or black and white
- Face shots, head and shoulder, or other image effects
I think this is getting closer to the way that searching for images should be done. I would like to see one other feature added – the ability to search by creative commons license and/or copyright license. If I’m looking for images to use that are public domain then I’d like to be able to search for those images. If I’d prefer images that I can purchase the exclusive rights to then I’d like to be able to search for those. Otherwise, MSN Live’s Image Search feature beats Google’s.
What I can’t speak to right now, however, is whether MSN Live competes with Google on image optimization. Currently, none of the search engines are close to where image optimization could be and even Google has a long way to go to satisfy the needs of webmasters who want to target Image Search through search engine optimization tactics. But a good starting place is by making it easier for searchers to find images that they may be looking for and MSN Live clearly has Google beat on that front.