Microsoft has signed a deal with Hewlett-Packard, geared toward increasing use of its search products, reports The Seattle Times.
The deal makes Microsoft Live Search the default search engine when people launch Internet Explorer on new HP PCs. Internet Explorer will also feature a custom toolbar, built on Microsoft's Silverlight multimedia platform, with tabs that take people to information on Hewlett Packard products.
One Microsoft executive said many people don't know where to find Microsoft's search engine (www.live.com), negatively impacting adoption to a significant degree. The HP deal was positioned as a way to help people "find" it.
In past efforts, Microsoft has tried encouraging use of Live Search by incorporating it in games and paying users.
Microsoft supplants Yahoo, which has had a similar relationship with HP since 2006. The deal will impact PCs sold beginning January, 2009.