Microsoft reportedly to add ChatGPT to Bing search engine

Microsoft is reportedly in the works to launch a version of its search engine Bing using the artificial intelligence behind ChatGPT, launched by OpenAI.

The Information reported the news on Tuesday, citing two people with direct knowledge of the plans.

Microsoft could launch the new feature before the end of March, in the hopes of challenging Google’s search engine, the Information reported.

Microsoft said in a blog post last year that it planned to integrate image-generation software from its image creation software, Dall-E 2, into Bing.

OpenAI and Microsoft declined to comment.

Microsoft had in 2019 backed San Francisco-based artificial intelligence company OpenAI, offering $1bn in funding. The two had formed a multi-year partnership to develop artificial intelligence supercomputing technologies on Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing service.

OpenAI made its latest creation ChatGPT chatbot available for free public testing on 30 November. The chatbot is a software application designed to mimic human-like conversation based on user prompts and can respond to a large range of questions while imitating human speaking styles.

The feature could make Bing more competitive to Google’s search engine at a time when Alphabet, its parent company, has seen advertising revenue growth slow significantly. Advertising is Alphabet’s primary source of revenue, the vast majority of which comes from search ads. Microsoft also saw its search and advertising growth rate slow down in the fourth quarter of the 2022 fiscal year.

OpenAI’s various products such ChatGPT, the natural language system GPT-3 and Dall-E 2 may still need work, but have already been pegged as the industry’s potential next disruptors. The former has reportedly led Google management to declare a “code red”, according to the New York Times, seeing the chat bot – which answers questions or prompts with clear explanations instead of just links – as a major threat to the way consumers currently use search engines.

Google, however, has been hard at work on its own chat bot technology called Language Model for Dialogue Applications – the sophistication of which led one Google engineer to claim it was sentient. He was placed on administrative leave after deciding to go public with his claims.

Reuters contributed reporting

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