Microsoft Bing will become ChatGPT’s default search engine in latest OpenAI collaboration – GeekWire


Todd Bishop
2023-05-23 11:05:18

Microsoft says Bing search will be available for ChatGPT Plus users starting today, and as a plugin for users on the ChatGPT free tier soon. (Microsoft Image)

Microsoft says Bing will become the default search engine for OpenAI’s ChatGPT, giving the popular generative AI chatbot “timelier and more up-to-date answers with access from the web,” including citations.

Currently, the default GPT 3.5 engine behind the free version of ChatGPT has a “knowledge cutoff” of September 2021. A “browsing” feature is available in beta to people who subscribe to ChatGPT Plus for $20/month.

Microsoft announced the news at its Build developer conference Tuesday morning. The company says Bing will roll out to ChatGPT Plus users today, and will be available soon to free users who enable a plugin.

Incorporating Bing into ChatGPT could give Microsoft additional momentum in its competition with Google, the longtime search market share leader.

Despite its longevity, Microsoft has struggled to make its mark against the search giant. Google remains the dominant player, with more than 90% worldwide market share, by some measures, compared with low-single digits for Bing, the second-largest player in the global search market.

ChatGPT was estimated to have 100 million monthly active users as of January, and interest in the OpenAI technology has soared since then, as evidenced by a Congressional hearing with its CEO Sam Altman last week.

Up to this point, the Microsoft-OpenAI partnership has largely worked in the reverse, with Microsoft incorporating OpenAI technology into its products. The tech giant in February announced a new Bing chatbot, powered by ChatGPT, along with a revamped version of its Edge browser.

The Bing chatbot announcement followed an additional investment by Microsoft in OpenAI, described by Microsoft as “a multiyear, multibillion dollar” deal to accelerate AI breakthroughs and releases.

Google, which has been cautious about the potential for AI to make mistakes and create unintended consequences, announced its Bard search chatbot as an experimental feature just before the Bing chatbot’s debut.

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