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Is Microsoft Blocking Google as the Default Search Engine on Certain Lumia Models?

July 15, 2014 - Written By Cory McNutt

The battle continues between Microsoft and their Bing Search engine versus Google and their mighty Google Search engine.  Microsoft and Bing have been trying to discredit the Google Search since Bing made its appearance in 2009. Truth be told, Bing does work a little better when searching a few items, but for the most part Google is the better and safer search engine.  However, Microsoft appears to be up to its old tricks by denying users of certain Lumia devices – Lumia 630 and 930 running the new Windows Phone 8.1 – which just happen to be the first two phones manufactured since Microsoft officially took over Nokia. Prior to Microsoft’s takeover, Nokia provided an option to change the default search engine to Google via its web browser, but that no longer appears to be the case.

Remember the big Microsoft push under Ballmer’s tenure as CEO – warning us not to get ‘Scroogled’ – which was abruptly yanked under the new CEO and many personnel changes.  Many though it had done more harm than good – turning off potential Bing customers that ended up sticking with Google.  When our sources reached out to Microsoft about the change in policy, a Microsoft spokesperson reached out with this explanation:

“We are always evaluating and evolving our marketing campaigns.  There are times when we use our marketing to highlight differences in how we see the world compared to competitors, and the Scroogled campaign is an example of this.  Moving forward, we will continue to use all the right approaches and tactics when and where they make sense.”

Existing Lumia devices that have been upgraded to Windows Phone 8.1 do not seem to be affected by this and some European versions seem to have the option to choose Google enabled according to our source.  Google is currently trying to get a lawsuit dismissed that claims Google ‘forced’ manufacturers to set Google as the default search engine on their Android smartphones.  However, Google allows the user to choose their search engine in Chrome, as does Apple in its Safari for iOS browser.  Instead of not allowing the use of a preferred search engine, why doesn’t Microsoft and Google just work on building the best search engine they can and let the user decide which one they like best…I was always told that the ‘cream will rise to the top.’

Please hit us up on our Google+ Page and let us know if you prefer Google or Bing for your default search engine and why…as always, we would love to hear from you.