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Bing Showcases Double Sidebar in New Look

It was expected that Bing would change its appearance and functionality in the upcoming weeks but new features have already begun to appear, for those living in the States (or at least fooling it into thinking you are).

As it seems, anyone accessing Bing from the US will be presented with a new interface, where the search engine has two columns - with the secondary being a lot thinner and displaying additional types of content (like maps, images, ratings as well as many others).

Microsoft announced last week at the Search Summit that Bing will receive a Snapshot and a Social sidebar in the upcoming period, but it seems only the latter is available at the moment.

To make the second Social sidebar visible the user first has to log into Facebook on or connect to other social services using the Windows Live ID.

Microsoft claims that the Snapshot sidebar has only been rolled out to a limited number of users and will exit testing stages in early June, at least for those living in the US.

Here's an extract from the press release:

'Initially, snapshot will be displayed for searches where Bing can determine a clear customer intent focused on accomplishing a specific task including restaurants, hotels, businesses and movies. Over time, the feature will be expanded to a greater number of places, things and people. "The technology we built on the back-end can scale incredibly well so we're particularly pleased," says Connell.'