Microsoft’s Bing has never been in any danger of overtaking Google as the Internet’s most popular search engine. But the AI-powered features that grabbed the headlines in the preview of the “new Bing” the company released last month seem to be helping: Microsoft said today that Bing had passed the 100 million daily active user mark.
“We are fully aware that we remain a small, low, and single-digit share player,” writes Microsoft’s Yusuf Mehdi, noting how small Microsoft’s share of the search market is compared to Google’s. “That being said, it feels good to be at the dance!”
Google doesn’t provide daily active user numbers for its search engine, but StatCounter data suggests its market share typically hovers around 90 percent in the US, compared to Bing’s 6 or 7 percent. .
Microsoft says there are “millions of active users” trying out the AI-powered Bing Preview and that about a third of them are people who weren’t using the service before. The company also credits the slow but steady growth of Microsoft Edge, which uses Bing as its default search engine and will repeatedly prompt you to change back to Bing as your default search engine if you switch to something else.
Microsoft released the Bing chatbot a month ago in a “limited preview,” using an OpenAI Large Language Model (LLM). The company has made several changes to the bot’s behavior in response to its sometimes strange and threatening conversations. One change limited the number of responses the chatbot could give in a single instance, as it was easier for the bot to derail during long sessions; more recently, Microsoft introduced some “personalities” for the bot to make responses easier or more entertaining.
Since last month, Microsoft has added “new Bing features” to its Edge browser, Skype, the Windows 11 taskbar, and some of its developer tools. The company is also testing “multimodal AI” technology that can process multiple forms of input, including images, text, audio, and video.
Tech – Ars Technica