Growing up with search engines I have never known anything other than Google. Some of you may remember using Yahoo or Bing at various points but now over 90% of searches happen on Google. This is a great example of a monopoly but recent events are starting to throw this dominance into question- will Bing be able to dethrone Google?
To answer this question we need some background on the buzzword product ChatGPT. This is an artificially intelligent piece of software that you can ask questions to and have conversations with. You never know this very writing could’ve been coded by a dynamic algorithm. While we can usually still discern the difference in tone and fluency between software writing and human writing this public release opened the general population’s eyes to what the future of artificial intelligence (AI) might look like.
ChatGDP is under the company OpenAI, which after seeing its power was quickly bought into by Microsoft. While Microsoft, the owner of Bing, didn’t acquire OpenAI they invested a large amount into the company. The ChatGDP application was trained on a large dataset but doesn’t have web scrapping abilities so is lost when it comes to current events or specific questions. It has general knowledge but couldn’t tell you what restaurants it recommends going to in Calgary.
However, this was changed when last week the integration between ChatGDP and Bing become available (if you want to join the waitlist you can here). Now you have web searching capabilities and the AI powers of information generation. For example, you can ask this chat function of Bing to plan an itinerary for your upcoming ten-day trip with friends to Italy.
Here Bing is clearly the first mover in integration but Google has also been working with AI software to improve the experience of a Google search as well. Even though the general public has been in the dark every tech company understands that artificial intelligence is the future and has been working on projects like ChatGDP for years. Now under the captivated public eye, it is a race to develop the best and most user-friendly version of this new technology.
The question now becomes who will win the AI wars. It is clear that we are trending towards a better way to explore the internet but whether that will still be under the trusty Google logo, Bing or even a new company is unknown.
Google has won the pure search engine wars and has the advantage of a large clientele plus a trusted brand name. But Bing has been subject to a lot of attention lately and has seen an influx in users due to everyone wanting to test out their new product. Whether Bing can retain these new users is a question and it will be exciting to see what Google’s technological response will be.
Whatever the dominating name, searching on the web is about to get a lot more personalized and efficient. Hopefully, it will come to fruition while I am still in school so I can get Bing and ChatGDP to write me practice tests for finals!
Annabella Stoll-Dansereau, Student, VSE, University of British Columbia