April 28, 2023

Search reinvented with AI - Microsoft Bing and ChatGPT



5 min reading

The Internet is in the midst of a revolution and Bing is changing the game.

What is Microsoft Bing?

Before getting to the heart of the matter, let's review what Microsoft Bing is. Microsoft Bing is an online search engine developed by Microsoft. It was launched in 2009 and is currently the second most popular search engine on the Internet. Here are the market shares of the main global search engines in April 2023, according to StatCounter: Google - 91.45%, Bing - 2.65%, Yahoo - 1.85%.

Bing offers similar search features to its competitors, including Google, such as web, image, video, map and news search.

It also has a built-in translation service, the ability to book flights and hotels, and a local search feature to find nearby businesses and points of interest. Bing is also used as the default search engine on Microsoft web browsers such as Edge and Internet Explorer.

Where does the name Microsoft Bing come from?

The name "Bing" was chosen for Microsoft's search engine after much thought about how the name should reflect the goal of providing relevant and fast search results. According to Microsoft, the name "Bing" was chosen because it is short, easy to remember and can be associated with speed and efficiency. The name was also designed to evoke the sound of a bell ringing, symbolizing the discovery of new information and the opening of new perspectives for Bing users. In addition, Microsoft said the name Bing is also an acronym for "Bing Is Not Google," emphasizing the difference between the two search engines.

Search with AI

History of Microsoft Bing

MSN Search was Microsoft's first search engine, developed in 1999. It was the beginning of a series of inventions of different search engine names. After MSN Search, there was Windows Live Search, then Live Search with various services included, Live Search QnA or Live Product Upload among others. Microsoft Bing was launched as a replacement for Live Search, which had failed to compete with the leading search engines of the time, Google and Yahoo!

Microsoft Bing today

Microsoft Bing in a few figures

According to the latest figures from StatCounter, as of April 2023, Bing accounts for about 3.9% of the global search engine market share. While this represents a considerably smaller market share than Google, Bing is still a major search engine with hundreds of millions of monthly users.

In 2021, it was reported that Bing had surpassed 100 million monthly active users in the United States. Bing is also used in some other Microsoft products, such as Cortana (voice assistant) and the Microsoft Advertising platform. In addition, Bing powers search on some third-party websites, such as Yahoo! and AOL.

Finally, it is worth noting that Bing continues to innovate, especially with the help of artificial intelligence.

The new version of Bing

Microsoft Bing is now enriched by a conversational robot via a partnership with the start-up OpenAI, which created the chatbot ChatGPT.

🚨 To go further, discover how to improve the collaborator experience: ChatGPT and Microsoft Teams

Unlike Chat GPT, which relies on training data from 2021, Bing fetches answers to complex questions from multiple websites, then synthesizes them into an easy-to-understand answer for the user. Also, on Bing, the "conversations" tab is similar to the user experience offered by ChatGPT.

For example, you can ask Bing if your laptop can fit in your backpack. Bing will then analyze the information from 9 different sites to find the answer, then display the references of these sites for more transparency. The opacity of the information sources was the main criticism that was made about ChatGPT.

This technological advance allows Bing to outpace the competition (Google Chrome, Safari, Mozilla Firefox) and put its Edge web browser in the spotlight. With Bing, Edge users can perform actions on websites, such as summarizing content, finding similar articles or searching for specific information.

Search reinvented with AI

To conclude

However, this new era of answer engines raises important questions about the future of information websites. How will these sites pay for themselves if users no longer need to visit them to get answers to their questions? One solution could be for search engines to pay websites to use their content to generate intelligent answers.

It's an idea that Microsoft CMO Yusuf Mehdi brought up when he explained that Bing was considering placing ads in the chat experience to share ad revenue with partners whose content contributed to the response.

In short, this evolution of search engines is redefining an entire ecosystem and this raises many questions about the future of the Internet as we know it.

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