Microsoft may call its new search engine Bing as it gets ready to replace Windows Live Search. The company has registered the domain names bing.com and bing.net, along with bing variations outside the U.S., including bing.com.au and bing.co.uk.
The new search engine, known by the code-name Kumo, has been tested internally by Microsoft employees. The software giant hopes the new engine will let it challenge Google's dominance of the search-advertising market. Microsoft is currently a distant third in that market, behind Google and Yahoo.
Kumo, or Bing, is expected to use the semantic-search technology from Powerset, which Microsoft acquired last summer. The technology tries to understand the meaning of phrases used in search, and the search engine will reportedly let people refine queries in a "table of contents" with multiple options.
Microsoft is widely expected to show the new search engine at the "D: All Things Digital" conference this week. CEO Steve Ballmer is scheduled to speak.
Advertising Age has reported that Microsoft plans to spend $80 to $100 million on ads for the new search engine -- more than for most consumer product launches. In comparison, the trade magazine said that last year, Google spent just $25 million on its own advertising promotions.