Microsoft ups the ante for online search with the new AI-powered Bing Engine and Edge Browser
Microsoft has ushered in a significant paradigm shift with its new Bing search engine and Edge web browser powered by artificial intelligence.
Bing.com’s new previews combine browsing with chat to create a unified user experience. This improves both. Search results, for instance, are more relevant. The results can appear without leaving the search page for information such as sports scores, stock prices, and weather predictions.
Bing can summarize more complex questions, such as “What can be substituted for eggs in baking a cake?” Bing will synthesize answers from multiple online sources.
Bing can refine searches and create new content, such as travel itineraries or quizzes for trivia nights.
Edge has AI features for creating and chatting and a new look. You can ask the Edge browser to summarize long reports, reduce them to their key takeaways, or create a LinkedIn posting from a few prompts.
Satya Nadda, Microsoft’s chairman and CEO, stated that “AI will fundamentally transform every software category. Starting with the biggest category of them all — search.”
Bob O’Donnell is the founder and chief analyst of Technalysis Research in Foster City, Calif., a firm specializing in technology market research, consulting, and analysis.
O’Donnell, a TechNewsWorld reporter, said: “You can get the speed of a search engine and the intelligence and chat tool based on natural language.”
He explained that they were making computers intelligent. It allows them to convey what is meant and not necessarily what was said. ”
He said adjusting would take some time, but it is dramatically better. Its efficiency and time-saving are out of this world.
He added, “I believe we are in the midst of a paradigm change.”
Ross Rubin is the principal analyst at Reticle, a consumer tech advisory firm in New York City. He said bringing AI into Bing was just a small part of Microsoft’s larger strategy.
Speaking to TechNewsWorld, Rubin said it’s not only about Bing. They’re trying to integrate AI in several of their products, including Office, Teams, and Azure.
He said that it was about more than just helping Bing compete with Google. “They wouldn’t have invested this much if they were only interested in making Bing more efficient.”
Microsoft’s move comes after Google announced Monday that it would be bringing an AI conversational system called Bard to a select group of “trusted test subjects.” Bard is built on Google’s LaMDA natural language technology. Microsoft’s offering uses OpenAI technology.
Sundar Pichai, CEO of Alphabet and Google, wrote on a blog that Bard aims to combine the vastness of the knowledge of the world with the intelligence, creativity, and power of our large language model. It uses information from the internet to produce high-quality, fresh responses.
He said that Bard would be released initially with a lightweight version of LaMDA. This smaller model uses significantly less computing power and allows us to scale up to more users.
He added that we’d combine feedback from external sources with our internal testing in order to ensure Bard’s answers meet high standards for quality, safety, and realism.
Pichai said that people often turn to Google to find quick answers to questions, such as “How many piano keys are there?” but increasingly, they’re turning to Google to gain deeper understanding and insights, like, “Is the guitar or piano easier to learn and how much time is needed to practice each?”
He continued, “AI can be useful in these moments by synthesizing insight for questions where there is no single right answer.” You’ll soon see AI-powered search features that will distill complex information into digestible formats. This can help you quickly grasp the big picture and gain more knowledge from the internet.
Pichai said that Google Search will soon be able to use these new AI features.
Leg up on Leader
Question: Will “soon?” be too late for the world?
Rob Enderle is the president and principal analyst of the Enderle Group in Bend, Ore.
Enderle told TechNewsWorld, “We’ll watch how many people switch.” The switching costs between Bing and Google are virtually non-existent. The question is, with switching costs this low, how many people will switch to Bing? And how much of a hit will Google suffer?”
He said that Google would need time to catch up. “People will establish habits with Bing, and if they are happy with Bing, why would they return to Google?”
He added, “This appears to be a well-executed strategy to fight Google, and Google was unprepared for whatever reason.”
Ed Anderson, Research Vice President and Analyst at Gartner in Stamford, Conn., a research-and-advisory company, maintains that Microsoft has a competitive advantage over Google by incorporating AI into its search.
A TechNewsWorld reporter Anderson said that Microsoft beat Google in bringing AI-assisted searches to Bing and Edge. Google’s search engine and web browser will show how close it is to achieving this.
Search Rules Rewritten
O’Donnell thinks the new Bing could make some progress against Google regarding search traffic. Once you try this new search engine, switching back to the older one will be difficult. He said, “It’s so much better.”
Rubin continued, “Microsoft tries to rewrite the rules of the games.” Google’s revenue model is at risk, not just its search dominance. The search revenue model will have to be rethought if you want search engines that provide answers and don’t redirect you anywhere.
Greg Sterling, the co-founder and editor of Near Media, a news, analysis, and commentary website, has pointed out that Google has a lot of resources it has developed for search.