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Microsoft Copilot (formerly Bing Chat) – What is it?

The newly rebranded Microsoft AI assistant
Last Updated on November 17, 2023
Microsoft Copilot (formerly Bing Chat) overview. AI capabilities explained.
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Microsoft Bing Chat is now Copilot. This means the search engine will be using the chatbot to provide another level of web-searching capabilities. The AI-powered service will use the technology utilised by Chat GPT, a conversational language model chatbot developed by OpenAI. This was backed by Microsoft, so it’s no surprise that the company have decided to use such technology in their own search engine.

Bing will now answer queries inputted into the search bar with text that mimics human speech – showing a single answer with knowledge gathered from many different websites containing information on the subject. The standard search results will show up below this. It means that answers to questions will be given in a more simple and speedy way. Theoretically, you won’t have to read through a long web page to find the information you need or compare answers from different sites.

AI conversational language models have well and truly taken off. Now it is time to see how major tech brands will implement them. Somewhat surprisingly given the sometimes-mocked reputation of the humble Microsoft search engine, it seems that Bing is leading the way.

What is Microsoft’s Copilot AI assistant (formerly Bing Chat)?

So, what exactly is the Bing Chat GPT search function? There are a number of things the addition of Chat GPT has brought to the Microsoft search engine. First of, it provides a more conversational way of finding out information. The service encourages you to ask the chatbot questions rather than just searching related terms. For example ‘tell me how to make the perfect banana bread’. You could then reply to the answer with, ‘I want one with a shorter list of ingredients’. You should be able to find an answer perfectly suited to your needs.

This extends to more complex situations, such as coding queries. You can also use the chatbot to generate answers which mimic human speech, like jokes or essays. This is what made the original Chat GPT service so fun and appealing to a wide range of users.

Final Thoughts

It’s worth heading over to Bing to check out the new AI-powered search engine yourself. With Google launching a similar addition to their search engine – currently under the name of Google Bard – it looks like AI chatbots are set to become a big part of the internet.

There will be plenty of AI-related news coming out over the next few weeks. Stick with us – we’ll be keeping you up to date with all the latest developments.

As a tech and AI writer for PC Guide, Gloria is interested in what new technology means for the future of consumer electronics and digital and broadcast journalism.