Microsoft Upstages RIM At BlackBerry World

RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis ceded the stage partway through his keynote address to his competitor, who proceeded to announce that Microsoft's Bing Search and Bing Maps products will be "fully integrated" into the BlackBerry platform later this year. Rather than simply supply a stand-alone app on the BlackBerry platform (which is already available, by the way), Ballmer said that Bing is going to be rooted deep within the operating system and more fully baked into the user interface. He didn't say exactly when it will happen, but alluded to the fact that it will be part of BlackBerry OS 7, which will first be available on the Bold 9900/9930 this summer as RIM's refreshed user interface.

This announcement, by Microsoft, was the biggest news to come from the BlackBerry World conference keynote.

But Ballmer didn't stop there. Oh, no. He actually pitched Windows Phone 7 to the audience, albeit briefly. Read that again: Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft, took the stage at BlackBerry World and pitched Windows Phone 7, its competing smartphone platform.

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