Microsoft is reportedly planning to bring OpenAI’s ChatGPT capabilities into Bing search results. A person familiar with the plans said that product updates could be deployed in several months, as stated by Bloomberg. While Bing’s closest competitor in search, Google, isn’t yet ready to incorporate their ChatGPT-like AI language models into search, Microsoft’s management expects the more intelligent version of Bing would leave Google behind. In addition, the Redmond-based tech giant is discussing incorporating GPT in its apps such as Word, PowerPoint, and Outlook, according to The Information.
These stories got the Internet buzzing over how this might change the way we search and work. Here are some of the reactions and thoughts on the matter at hand.
Talking about landing AI on the Office suite, users have been drawing parallels with Clippy, Microsoft’s virtual assistant, which has been inserted into Office software. Despite the fact that it was widely hated (Time named it one of the worst inventions ever), Clippy managed to survive for a decade.
Following the rumors about Bing, Twitter users expressed concern that it might be the biggest threat to Google.
Some suggested that the early iterations of AI-driven Bing might be disappointing. But one way or another this could be something that at least makes the frozen search marker alive.
Others took Microsoft’s ambitions with a pinch of salt: Bing is stereotypically considered a bad search engine, and AI won’t be able to change it.
The other reason for this pessimism is the fact that Google has been incorporating AI technology into its search engines for years. Its “knowledge panel” and zero-click results come up with “one true answer” which is exactly what people are expecting from a GPT-based engine. What’s more, there is You.com which offers an AI-powered search engine, chatbot, writing services, etc. “Shocked it’s taking them so long when you.com already has it” – wondered a Reddit user, while You.com was poking fun at Bing on Twitter.
Shortly after ChatGPT’s arrival, OpenAI’s CEO Sam Altman gave an estimate of the average cost per chat at “single-digits cents.” Tom Goldstein, an associate professor at the University of Maryland, found out that an average 30-word-length query might cost about 1 cent (or $0.0003 per word). Consequently, some users tried to get a bit more glimpse into the economy. They calculated whether it would be economically viable for Microsoft to integrate ChatGPT, which requires a ton of processing power, into Bing.
At the end of the day, old habits die hard. If someone use Google for decades, why would they suddenly change their habits? By “someone” we mean all these people have been typing nearly 90% of search queries worldwide in 2022. But what if Bing’s “15 minutes of fame” turns out to be something more?