Here’s a weird addition to the App Store — Snipp3t. The app, made by Microsoft and exclusive to iOS, does one very niche thing: it track celebrities. It sounds so simple, but it’s a bit of a Trojan Horse from Microsoft, and a smart one at that.
What Snipp3t does is provide quick snippets of info about celebrities being mentioned in the news. You can tap on the new story to get an expanded view of the story, which also brings up pics of the personality in question as well as a timeline of other news articles relating to them.
That’s where you start to see what’s going on with Snipp3t. It’s not a celebrity tracker as much as it is an introduction to Bing, Microsoft’s search engine. The slick app belies results culled from Bing, and presents them in a gorgeous interface. What Microsoft is essentially offering up is a skinned, celebrity-focussed Bing. We like slick apps, and we like celebrities — so why not, right?
You can personalize it by signing in with Facebook, too. That may be Microsoft’s end-around play to get more info on you. While the introduction of the app is a bit befuddling at first, it looks to use to be another way to make an impression on your homescreen. The app empire trend has made its way to Redmond, it seems.