Late least year, Microsoft rolled out a half dozen Bing Apps for Windows 8 users, each one focused on a specific category, such as travel and sports. The apps were designed to offer "immersive vertical experiences," and now, about six months later, a big line of updates for them is being pushed out. Users can grab the updates now by heading into the Windows Store and selecting the updates notification.
The Bing Apps are comprised of News, Weather, Sports, Finance, Maps, and Travel. All six offer up content relevant to its category, having been created specifically for Windows 8, meaning they're fast and work well. Each app is getting its own update that brings a variety of improvements and features unique to the app, such as the new ability to customize the News app to follow certain stories and topics you're interested in. There's also added support for RSS and reading offline.
New Maps features includes better driving, walking, and transit directions, the ability to save places you frequent as a start screen pin or favorite, and up-to-the-minute updates for things like construction and accidents. The Finance app, on the other hand, didn't see much in the way of changes, gaining a refreshed watchlist, interactive charts that can be customized, and US stock updates in real time.
The Sports app gains 29 new sports leagues after updating, making for a total of 65 leagues across a variety of sports, including football, soccer, basketball, baseball, and more. The Travel app also got a bit of an update, gaining new content from Frommer's, Lonely Planet, and Fodor's. Flights can be booked from within the app, which is pretty convenient. And finally, there's the Weather app, which now offers dynamic animated maps that show the weather into the future. Users can choose by cloud cover, temperature, and more.