Drops Map Product & Outsources To Microsoft Virtual Earth

The LiveSide Blog reported that Chris Pendleton,Virtual Earth Evangelist, posted the news that has now dropped their own mapping product for Microsoft’s Virtual Earth.

Virtual Earth can now be found on Ask Maps, Ask City, and within Ask’s search results as Smart Answers. It is a shame to see dissolve the mapping service, but it really comes as no surprise to me as they continue to cut costs and outsource innovation to other companies.

Microsoft does have an excellent mapping product, which is used by,, and, amongst others.

Is this a global change to all properties? I tried finding’s Maps in the UK and I received a message that reads:

Dear Ask Maps user,

We are sorry, but our maps service is no longer available. Please re-enter your query in the search box above to use our main web search service.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused you. If you have any comments or questions about our service please contact us.

The Ask Team

Related Topics: Ask: Maps | Channel: Local | Microsoft: Bing Maps & Local


About The Author: is Search Engine Land's News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry's personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here. For more background information on Barry, see his full bio over here.

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