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GPT-4: Bing to Word and Excel, AI is changing Microsoft platform experience

The company revealed that because of its services' integration with AI, the number of users of Edge Browser has shot up, and the queries' responses via Bing Search have also become more accurate

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Udisha Srivastav New Delhi

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As Microsoft powers its productivity suites, search engine, and browser with AI, the integration is increasing the company’s user base and making its search results more accurate

Microsoft is betting big on artificial intelligence. The American tech giant is evolving both its business and consumer-centric platforms by inter-weaving AI into its services.

The company revealed that because of its services’ integration with AI, the number of users of Edge Browser has shot up, and the queries’ responses via Bing Search have also become more accurate.

The company has also recently introduced a feature called ‘Bing Image Creator,’ which enables users to create an image using a text prompt. Open AI’s DALL-E model powers the new feature.

How is AI changing Microsoft’s productivity apps?

After search engine and browser, Microsoft enabled AI capabilities in its suite of productivity apps called Microsoft 365. With AI, the suite is now called Microsoft 365 Copilot. (Add a bit about why Microsoft is calling it a Copilot)

The Microsoft 365 Copilot includes apps such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Teams. With AI integrated, each of these are set to get a big makeover. For instance, the Copilot in Excel app can quickly summarise critical trends and analyse large data chunks.

Likewise, in Outlook, Copilot assists users in curating relevant emails quickly, offering relevant suggestions that users can alter and customise. This way, a user doesn’t have to start working from scratch; with Copilot’s assistance, the users can promptly get things off the ground.

In a digital presentation, a Microsoft executive, Jared Spataro, described Copilot as offering “a whole new way of working.”

What changes has Bing Search undergone due to AI integration?

Microsoft’s CEO, Satya Nadella, said a notion of Copilot would be there in every application canvas. “We want to show you some of this innovation, starting with how it is going to reshape the largest software category, Search. It is a new game in search; it’s a new paradigm for search,” he said.

In a company blog post, Microsoft referred to Bing and Edge as web copilots. It said that the company had brought search, browsing, and chat under one umbrella to provide a unified experience to the users. In short, the search relevance of Bing to produce answers to specific queries has ramped up. Besides, it allows users to explore and summarise the answers.

The experience is also enhanced with an interactive chat that enables users to nudge the search engine to provide more detailed answers. The company claimed that the AI-powered Bing is more potent than ChatGPT as it takes learnings and advancements from ChatGPT and GPT-3.5 to become “faster, more accurate, and more capable.” Microsoft referred to this collection of capabilities and techniques as its ‘Prometheus model.’

How has AI influenced the Edge Browser?

The Edge experience is pumped up by adding two crucial functionalities: Chat and Compose. “With the Edge Sidebar, you can ask for a summary of a lengthy financial report to get the key takeaways – and then use the chat function to ask for a comparison to a competing company’s financials and automatically put it in a table,” the blog post said. Furthermore, it can help formulate social media content and refine it with added specifications such as the post's tone, format, and length.

The tug-of-war between tech giants in AI-assisted services is ongoing as Microsoft’s announcement of AI-powered Bing Search, and Edge Browser came on the heels of Google’s revelation of its chatbot, Bard AI. 

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First Published: Mar 27 2023 | 5:25 PM IST

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