How to get the most out of Bing Image Search in Microsoft Office

Bing Image Search is a feature in Microsoft Office documents that allows you to quickly search for online images and insert them directly into a document, without bouncing between browser and download windows. It’s a big time saver that many Office users aren’t even aware of – so let’s talk about how to use it!

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So you’ve opened up your document, you know where you want to insert an image on the page, and you’re ready to tap into Bing Image Search capabilities. Here’s where to go:Office Online Pictures

A quick note on browsers and software. Microsoft has done a good job of updating the Bing Image Search to work with pretty much everything, but there are limits. If you (for some reason) are still using a version of Internet Explorer, the image search feature may not work properly.

Likewise – and also unlikely – If you are using any of the Office suite software from before 2007, the image search feature won’t be present. However, Bing Image Search does work with all versions of Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Kindle Fire, Edge, etc., so there are ways to access the feature across any desktop or mobile device.

The unfiltered version of Bing Image Search typically brings up all available results from the Bing search engine. For a variety of reasons, you may want to filter these images and speed up your search. Keep in mind useful filtering options like these:

There’s an additional Bing search feature available in the newest versions of Office, and we think you’ll like it, too – it’s called Smart Lookup, and it functions a lot like Image Search, but for facts. Highlight any word or phrase in your Office document, right-click, and choose Smart Lookup to activate this feature.Office Smart Lookuup

Related: New Office 2016 bundle is easy on the eyes

Of course, Office auto-dictionaries have been around forever, but Smart Lookup goes several steps further. You can ask direct questions in Lookup, tap into wiki articles to check facts, and see the top links that Bing has for that question or phrase (a Cortana-based search option is also available). It’s a very nice companion tool to Image Search if you are building a report or essay. Smart Lookup is available for all 2016 versions of the Office suite, including Excel, Word, Outlook, and PowerPoint.

As you probably noticed, the Office image search feature has evolved significantly from when it was first released, and Microsoft is continuing to study how people use this feature and how to make it better – which is why we now have better filters and additions like Smart Lookup. To make sure that Bing Image Search continues to work for you and to take advantage of all the latest tools, remember to turn on automatic updates. If you don’t want to use automatic updates, at least make sure that your default browser and version of Office are updated to the newest versions for best results.

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