Bing Maps Calculates Your Cab Tab

Bing Maps continues to impress: first with a treasure map, now with a cab fare calculator that factors in pick-up, time, and distance charges. It even picks the shortest route so that you're not left feeling squeezed.

The app is available now, and is actually just one of several entrants being considered for Microsoft's King of Bing Maps competition. Other apps also in contention—and also currently incorporated into Bing Maps—include GeoSalesTax, Random Location, and something called World of Football, which I sadly suspect employs the international definition.

You can already get taxi fare estimates from HopStop and elsewhere, but the Bing iteration feels smoother, with a wider scope. More importantly, it shows just how serious Microsoft is about pushing Bing's capabilities, making it a viable and distinctive alternative to Google by continuing to add value.

Now if only they didn't make me install the latest version of Silverlight. [Bing Maps via Mashable]