Save Money the Microsoft or Google Way
Article by George Norman
On 06 Mar 2009
In this time of financial uncertainty, everybody’s attention (even malware spreaders) is focused on the financial crisis and consequently people are trying to cut back costs, or at least not pay as much for the things they want to get. Microsoft, through Live Search, has for some time now offered cashback offers to people who acquired items online upon discovering them via the Microsoft developed search engine. According to the Live Search team, this is not the only way one could get a discount.

Product Manager with Live Search, Mikko Ollila, explains: “The MSN Toolbar contains a cashback–offer-detecting mechanism. This means that wherever you search online — whether it’s Yahoo, Live, Google or Craigslist — the toolbar will gleam an icon if there is cashback available for the item you searched for. It never fails, and when you click the gleam it brings you to the page where the cashback offer is available. The toolbar comes with a bunch of useful functionality — and it definitely comes with some peace of mind: You won’t miss a great deal, wherever you go online.”

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The irony would be if we could use this toolbar to get a discount for purchasing an iPhone – as we’ve previously mentioned, these devices are not permitted in the Gates household, nor are their three children allowed to get one.

Moving on, search engine giant Google is not to be trumped by Microsoft and their toolbar and as such has launched a web page called Tip Jar, where users can post their money saving tips for everyone to take advantage of. The last time we checked the number of tips posted to Tip Jar exceeded the 1,000 mark.

Software Engineer with Google, Colby Ranger explains: “As we all navigate today's choppy economic waters, we'd like to put these beliefs into practice. That's why we created Tip Jar, an experiment powered by Google Moderator that we hope will help you discover the most effective ways to save money. There are lots of money-saving tips scattered across the web, but even if you found them, it would be hard to know which ones were worth trying. Tip Jar gathers tips in one place and invites people — i.e., you, me and everyone else — to rank them in order of usefulness and even add their own tips to the list. Over time, the best and most useful tips will rise to the top.”

If you would like to get the MSN Toolbar, a download location is available here.
If you would like to check out Tip Jar, you can do so here.



Tags: Microsoft, Live Search, MSN Toolbar, Google, Tip Jar
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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