Microsoft Bing goes 13-0 up to predict World Cup winner


by Ben Sullivan| 09 July 2014

Predictive analytics forecasts every World Cup knockout match.

Microsoft Bing's World Cup predictions in the knockout round have been bang on track, forecasting the correct winners in every match.

Bing went 13-0 up last night, as Germany smashed home a 7-1 win against World Cup hosts Brazil.

Windows Phone users have the added bonus of being able to ask Cortana "Who will win?" on their smartphones. Cortana is the voice assistant 'virtual head' of Bing, and will be released for UK Windows Phone users this summer.

The Bing Predicts feature started by forecasting contestants' success on TV shows like The Voice, Dancing With the Stars and American Idol, but now a simple search for World Cup Predictions or any group matches will lead to Bing's predictions.

The team behind it wrote in a blog post: "For the tournament, our models evaluate the strength of each team through a variety of factors such as previous win/loss/tie record in qualification matches and other international competitions and margin of victory in these contests, adjusted for location since home field advantage is a known bias.

"Further adjustments are made related to other factors which give one team advantages over another, such as home field (for Brazil) or proximity (South American teams), playing surface (hybrid grass), game-time weather conditions, and other such factors. In addition, data obtained from prediction markets allows us to tune the win/lose/tie probabilities due to the 'wisdom of the crowds' phenomenon captured by the people wagering on the outcomes."

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