Verizon, Microsoft closer to search deal

Verizon Wireless and Microsoft are close to a deal that will make Microsoft the default search engine for most Verizon phones, edging out Microsoft's rival Google, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

Those familiar with the discussions said the two companies are close to reaching a deal, and as part of the agreement, Microsoft would share with Verizon revenue generated from ads shown alongside web searches. Microsoft is prepared to make guaranteed payments of between $500 million and $650 million to Verizon over the course of five years, which is about double what Google offered.

Verizon has said it will make a decision soon. Separately, Microsoft is also considering a deal to put Windows Mobile on more Verizon handsets, which could bring the total of the two deals to more than $1 billion.

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