Microsoft Edge and Bing add price comparisons in time for holiday shopping

Microsoft Edge is tapping Bing's AI to allow you to compare prices as you shop online.

Credit: Microsoft

As Amazon Prime Day approaches, Microsoft has implemented a price-comparison tool within Microsoft Edge to help shoppers evaluate the best deal.

The price-comparison tool is one of a number of new features coming to Edge, in conjunction with Microsoft’s Bing search engine. Those features include the formal launch of Bing Rebates, which offers Microsoft Rewards members site-wide discounts as they shop online.

Unfortunately, Microsoft’s new price comparisons aren’t as easy as entering search terms in a search box. Instead, Microsoft has made them part of its Collections feature, which essentially bookmarks individual webpages inside a Collection. However, a Collection is more than a just a folder of bookmarks, as Microsoft’s Bing sniffs each webpage and pulls out the relevant data: price, availability, and so on. It’s this pricing data that Microsoft will extract and then hunt down on competing websites.

Note that the numbers Edge and Bing are extracting represent the published price on the page. Occasionally you’ll see sites publish a price, then offer you the ability to input a coupon. Discount codes aren’t applied, either. 

It appears, though, that those features are coming. “When you click ‘compare price to other retailers,’ you’ll see a list of prices of that item across other retailers along with direct links to the pages so that you can quickly complete your purchase,” Microsoft says. “This is just the beginning of the shopping journey. Microsoft Edge will continue to bring you features that help you save time and keep more money in wallet like more proactive price comparison and coupons.” Those features can be accessed early by signing up for the Edge Insider channels—Microsoft’s beta channels for accessing early builds of the Edge browser.

Whether you choose to wait for the new features or sign up for them early, one thing is for certain: online shopping will be bigger than ever this holiday season, and Microsoft has given you a new tool to save money. 

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Mark Hachman

Mark Hachman

PC World (US online)
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