Microsoft pays street walkers to fill Bing

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Microsoft pays street walkers to fill Bing
Panoramic shot using Photosynth on iPhone 4. Image credit: Liam Tung.

Taps army of tech-savvy iPhone users.

Gigwalk, the app that pays a fee to its subscribers to do odd jobs while walking the street, has signed up Microsoft’s Bing. 

Microsoft wants iPhone users that are members of Gigwalk to use the vendor's panoramic photo app Photosynth to take photos, which it will use to fill out local searches on Bing. 

“By combining Gigwalk’s tech-savvy mobile force with our popular Photosynth app, we’re able to add immersive panoramas to Bing local search results, so people can accurately see the details of a business such as a store or restaurant,” said David Gedye, lead program manager of Bing Mobile.

“Gigwalk’s network delivers high-quality results, often within 24 hours, and that’s hard to beat,” he added. 

Gigwalk launched in May and has amassed 50,000 iPhone members across eight US cities.

Members are offered new gigs over the Gigwalk app. The jobs can pay between US$3 to $50 and typically involves taking a photo of a location that Gigwalk’s customer determines.

The start-up currently has 116,000 gigs to offer Gigwalkers, who can earn between $60 to $100 a day, which is delivered through PayPal once the job is complete.

Users are given a "streetcred" rating, determined by the quality of work. A higher street cred allows the member to receive higher paying work, Gigwalk explains.  

Gigwalk has already signed-up GPS maker TomTom to improve its mapping service and restaurant directory Menupages.com. 

Some of the applications that companies can sign Gigwalkers up to include verifying street signs, taking photos of food menus and product placements, or writing a review. The company will soon release video and audio tasks. 

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