Motorola, Microsoft in deal to put Bing on phones

NEW YORK Wed Mar 10, 2010 9:19pm EST

Signage for Motorola is displayed outside their office building in Tempe, Arizona October 29, 2009. REUTERS/Joshua Lott

Signage for Motorola is displayed outside their office building in Tempe, Arizona October 29, 2009.

Credit: Reuters/Joshua Lott

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - Motorola Inc has reached a deal with Microsoft Corp that will put Bing search and mapping services on its phones that use Google's Android operating system.

Motorola said the partnership with Microsoft means that a Bing bookmark and search widget will be loaded on cell phones, starting in the coming weeks with phones in China.

The move follows shortly after Motorola struck a similar deal to let consumers in China use Baidu Inc, among others, as the default Web search instead of Google on Android based phones.

The partnerships come against a backdrop of Google's dispute with China over censorship, which, if it leads to Google withdrawing from the country, could cause big headaches for Motorola.

That's because Motorola is banking on its ties to Google's Android and its sales in China to help in a big turnaround effort. Having search alternatives on the Android phones should lessen Motorola's dependence on Google, in China or elsewhere, analysts have said.

(Reporting by Paul Thomasch; editing by Carol Bishopric)

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