Microsoft’s Bing search engine might soon become more attuned to users’ needs and return results in a more human-like fashion. According to The Information, the tech giant is planning to incorporate the OpenAI software powering ChatGPT into Bing in hopes that it can help the company catch up to (or maybe even outshine) Google. Microsoft invested $1 billion in OpenAI back in 2019, and more recent reports said it’s in talks with the Elon Musk-founded startup for a follow-up investment. Now, The Information is reporting that Microsoft’s initial investment included an agreement to incorporate some aspects of GPT into Bing.
OpenAI developed GPT as a language model that uses deep learning to generate human-like text responses. Late last year, it launched a program called ChatGPT that quickly skyrocketed in popularity due to its ability to return responses that seem like they were written by actual people. Educators raised concerns that it could easily be used for cheating, since those who tried the tool said they would’ve given its responses a good grade if a student claimed to have written them. ChatGPT is free for now, but OpenAI intends to charge for its use in the future.
What GPT integration would mean for Bing isn’t clear at this point. It doesn’t have the capability to scrape the internet for results, so Microsoft will still use its own search engine technology. However, The Information said it could help Bing present results to users in a friendlier way. A source “familiar with Bing’s systems” told the publication that Microsoft could use the technology to present search results as full sentence answers with the source for the information. If Bing suggests related queries to the original one, GPT could explain their relevance in a meaningful manner. The technology could help Bing suggest better keywords or key phrases to users, as well.
Microsoft could launch GPT integration as soon as this March, The Information says, so we might hear a confirmation of this report — along with more details, if it is indeed true — in the near future.
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