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10 websites and services to watch in 2010

These web firms could be household names by 2011

As every new year begins, analysts and pundits make predictions about what will be hot in the forthcoming months. We're no exception, so check out our list of 10 hot websites and services to watch in 2010.

2. Bing

When Bing appeared in mid-2009, many people were skeptical. We wondered if Microsoft had the vision and talent to take on Google.

The Google approach to search had, for most people, become the de-facto standard, and had gone pretty much unquestioned.

But Bing has proved itself by reworking many aspects of search, offering image search and viewing, adding the ability to search Twitter tweets, and even integrating search results from semantic search engine Wolfram Alpha.

After Bing's release the site quickly captured a sizable share of web searches, becoming a legitimate competitor to Google.

Though Google is still far ahead with better than 70 percent of all searches, Bing's share continues to rise: today, Bing gets about 10 percent of web searches.

I believe Bing's star is still rising. This year, look for Bing to make a serious run at Google in web search.

Remember, too, that Microsoft Office 2010 will be offering web-based components at Windows Live, which will draw a lot of users - and many of them will be doing searches.

3. Android Market

Today you'll find the Android operating system inside only 3.5 percent of smartphones worldwide. But Gartner says that Android will be the second most popular smartphone OS in the world by 2012, behind the iPhone OS.

Though only 10 Android phones saw release in 2009, CCS Insight says that about 50 new Android phones will appear in 2010.

Judging by the excitement among phone makers and app developers over Android, even those projections might prove conservative. And the excitement will spread to consumers within the next year.

All of that adds up to one thing: a whole lot of people looking for a whole lot of apps for their Android phones.

For the most part they'll get their apps at the Android Market. The Market currently provides only about 20,000 apps, far less than the iPhone store's 85,000 offerings, but that too will change, fast.

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NEXT PAGE: Grooveshark and Google Voice

  1. These web companies could be household names by the end of this year
  2. Bing and the Android Market
  3. Grooveshark and Google Voice
  4. Justin.tv and Clicker
  5. Yammer, Wikitravel.org and Postabon
  6. Honourable mentions

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