Guy (with ax to grind?) disses Bing / Kayak deal

By Kip Kniskern | In Opinion | Posted March 7, 2011

kayakWe’re sure that Jay Bhatti is probably a very nice guy.  Maybe he doesn’t have much to do after Spock.com was sold, or maybe he misses his old pals in Redmond.  Whatever.  But when a guy guest posts on Business Insider SAI and self titles the post “Ex-Microsoft Employee: 5 Things The Kayak Deal Tells Us About Bing”, even though it’s been years since he was at Microsoft, you kind of have to wonder what his motives are.

Bhatti doesn’t approve of the Bing deal with Kayak, at least not for Bing’s sake.  The same guy who advised Microsoft to drop one of the top 10 web properties in the world (MSN.com), now thinks it’s a bad idea that Satya Nadella was promoted out of Bing, where Qi Lu is in firm control, into Server and Tools, where Bob Muglia just left and the opportunities are far greater.  We’re not sure what that has to do with Kayak, particularly, but he’s mighty upset about it, so go figure.

Bhatti then proceeds to bungle through the details of the deal, apparently not understanding that Kayak will provide flight information only to Bing, and that the Price Predictor technology, a major reason why Microsoft acquired Farecast, is alive and well.  From the Bing announcement on the Kayak deal:

What this means for Bing Travel customers is that, in the coming weeks, travelers will have access to a more comprehensive set of flight itineraries including more airlines, airports and cities; in addition to the unique travel tools Bing Travel provides such as Price Predictor, flexible search, Flights Answers and more.

In an earlier guest post on SAI, Bhatti advised Bing to stop going after the lucrative search vertical markets and instead concentrate on long tail (read: no money) searches.  Now this time he’s upset that Bing has strengthened its up and coming Travel vertical with the Kayak partnership, and somehow sees this as an indication that Bing is no longer interested in verticals.  Eh…what?

To top it off, Bhatti, after complaining two paragraphs previously that Bing is abandoning acquisitions, feels that Bing employees will be “demoralized” by using “someone else’s technology”.  So not acquiring technology from outside is bad, but acquiring technology from a partnership is “demoralizing”?  At least those demoralized employees were probably cheered up a bit by Bhatti’s post, we hope they got a good hearty laugh out of it.  We sure did.

Posted March 7th, 2011 at 1:28 am
Category: Opinion
Tags: Bing