Earlier this week, Microsoft launched its new AI-powered Bing search engine in collaboration with OpenAI, the team behind ChatGPT. Microsoft says that the next-generation OpenAI model it uses is faster, more accurate, and more capable than ChatGPT, so it’s no surprise that millions of users want to take it for a spin. That also explains why its Microsoft Bing Search mobile app is suddenly rocketing up the download charts on Apple’s App Store. See more details below.
ChatGPT is an artificial-intelligence chatbot developed by San Francisco-based AI research company OpenAI. Released in November 2022, it can have conversations on topics from history to philosophy, generate lyrics in the style of Taylor Swift or Billy Joel, and suggest edits to computer programming code.
ChatGPT is trained on a vast compilation of articles, websites and social-media posts scraped from the internet as well as real-time conversations—primarily in English—with human contractors hired by OpenAI. It learns to mimic the grammar and structure of the writing and reflects frequently-used phrases.
The chatbot isn’t always accurate: its sources aren’t fact-checked, and it relies on human feedback to improve its accuracy.
OpenAI developed ChatGPT as part of a strategy to build AI software that will help the company turn a profit. In January, Microsoft, its strategic partner, unveiled a fresh multibillion-dollar investment in OpenAI and said it plans to infuse ChatGPT into its Bing search app and other products.
Everyone’s downloading the Bing app
While the new Bing.com is now live in preview, you’ll have to sign up for the waitlist if you want to test it out. Microsoft says that it will scale the preview to millions of users in the coming weeks, but there are two ways to get ahead in line right away. The first is to set Microsoft apps as the defaults on your PC, and the second is to scan a QR code to download the Bing app.
That might have something to do with the surge of Bing app downloads.
As reported by TechCrunch, app intelligence firm data.ai estimates that the Bing app has seen a 10x increase in downloads since the announcement. As of Thursday, Microsoft Bing Search is the sixth most popular free app on the entire App Store. It’s also the top free productivity app, beating out the likes of Gmail, Google Drive, and Google Docs.
You probably won’t be surprised to learn that the Bing app was not exactly a mainstay in the App Store’s top 10 prior to this week. In fact, data.ai revealed that Bing was ranked as the 160th most popular productivity app last Thursday. It didn’t even appear in the U.S. App Store’s Top Overall Charts, but now it’s a (temporary) smash hit.
Of course, apps go viral every week. The question now is whether or not Bing can actually take away a consequential amount of market share from Google. If conversational AI proves to be the game-changer many expect it to be, Bing proving itself to millions of users while Google ramps up for the launch of its own Bard AI could make a huge difference.