Microsoft began making AI updates available to users on Tuesday, including ChatGPT, its search engine Bing, and cloud services. This is a broad rollout aimed at closing the gap with Google.
Among the most significant updates is the addition of live search results from Bing to ChatGPT, the viral chatbot from its partner OpenAI, whose answers were previously limited to information as of 2021.
ChatGPT can now pull from Bing online results for paid members and will soon do so for free users, according to the company’s annual Microsoft Build conference.
The corporation is also extending so-called Bing plug-ins, which use a standard adopted by OpenAI and allow businesses to deal more easily with consumers using its search engine.
“This is a profound change to how people will use the web,” Yusuf Mehdi, Microsoft’s consumer chief marketing officer, said in an interview.
When asked if Microsoft could sell ad placements for the plug-ins, Mehdi said the business hasn’t gotten there yet, but that “the model for how people acquire customers is changing.”
When asked if ChatGPT will replace Microsoft’s Bing given that it contains recent online information, Mehdi said the programmes provide different experiences but that Microsoft would profit regardless, with citations in ChatGPT driving traffic to Bing.
New cloud service capabilities include the ability for organisations to create plug-ins that connect to Microsoft 365 Copilot, the company’s AI assistant for corporations.
According to Microsoft, a plug-in may allow a staffer to ask the AI in clear language to schedule vacation or clarify legal difficulties with vendor contracts. Microsoft intends to make it easier for businesses to customise their own AI copilots.
Starting in June, the corporation will also make an AI assistant, or copilot, accessible as a preview to some users of its popular Windows operating system.
The Bing changes are part of Microsoft’s drive to take a larger share of the projected $286 billion worldwide search advertising market.