Back in October, with the launch of Windows 8, Microsoft launched a collection of Bing Apps for Windows 8 which included News, Finance, Weather, Sports, and Maps. The apps provide - as Microsoft says - "gorgeous, comprehensive and customizable experiences powered by Bing that showcase world class content from leading outlets". And indeed, the Bing apps for Windows 8 are a useful enhancement for Microsoft's PC platform. While it took Microsoft a little bit longer, it hasn't stopped development and therefore, today many of those experiences are announced for Windows Phone 8 users around the world too! This includes Bing News, Bing Weather, Bing Sports and Bing Finance.
Bing News keeps you up to date about what's happening in the world. With the new app, you have one comprehensive experience to keep tabs on the latest headlines and videos of breaking news. And the app is customizable so you can track specific story categories, topics, or news sources that matter to you. You can even rearrange the headline clusters so that the news that matters most to you is at the top. It even comes with Live Tiles that you can see what's happening at a glance. You can also pin a favorite news source or a personal topic to your Start screen to get quick access to the news that matters most to you.
Bing Sports is your personal sports companion letting you stay on top of the sports and teams that you care about. You can swipe through to see recent scores, top sports headlines, videos, photos, schedules, standings, statistics and much more across most major sports, including soccer, football, baseball, cricket, racing, tennis, hockey, and basketball. And if you have a favorite team you can quickly access team news, scores and league standings. You can even pin the team to your Start screen and tap the tile to go straight in.
Bing Weather keeps you up-to-date with current conditions including temperature, precipitation and wind. The Bing Weather app also dynamically updates your live tile based upon your current location. Open the app to get more detail on the present location or others you've saved as favorites. You can follow the weather with dynamic maps for your city or region in a number of categories including satellite, temperature, precipitation, cloud cover and radar. You can also drill down in to the daily weather conditions, explore historical data and view charts for temperature and precipitation.
You can pin the app to your Start screen for instant access to today's conditions for your current location as well as your favorite cities. Once pinned, tap a location to get detailed information, including hourly and 10-day forecasts, along with monthly averages.
Bing Finance keeps you up to date about the financial markets and gauge performance of your stocks at a glance with the Bing Finance app which includes financial news, market info, currency conversions, timely US stock updates and customizable interactive charts. You can set up a watchlist to track your stocks and pin individual stocks to your Start screen for live tile updates.
With a swipe of your finger you can access market information for currencies, commodities, bonds and more, plus a currency converter tool.
Each Bing App, Bing News, Bing Weather, Bing Sports and Bing Finance can now be downloaded free of charge from Microsoft's Windows Phone Marketplace. However, while Microsoft said that the Bing Apps are available "globally" (and the apps are available in countless languages), at the moment they are only downloadable for U.S. users.
Cheers ~ Arne