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ChatGPT Boosts User Numbers and Time Spent on Microsoft's Bing, but Fails to Dent Google's Search Dominance

Bing's market share has seen only a marginal increase since the integration of ChatGPT. ChatGPT helped reverse the decline in user engagement on Bing, with a significant increase in monthly active users and time spent on the search engine. Both Microsoft and Google believe that generative AI will transform the search experience.

Microsoft's integration of ChatGPT into its Bing search engine last February was hailed as a potential game-changer in the search market. However, despite the initial excitement, Bing's market share has seen only a marginal increase since the introduction of ChatGPT.


According to data analytics firm StatCounter, Bing ended 2023 with just 3.4% of the global search market, up less than 1 percentage point from the time of the ChatGPT announcement. Despite the conversational capabilities of ChatGPT, Bing has struggled to gain relevance and has often been seen as a less serious alternative to Google.


Before the integration of generative AI into Bing, users were spending 33% less time on the search engine compared to the previous year. However, the introduction of ChatGPT helped reverse this decline. In the second quarter of 2023, US monthly active users more than doubled year over year to 3.1 million, with overall users spending 84% more time on the search engine.


To capitalise on this momentum, Microsoft has been incorporating more AI tools into Bing. In October, the company integrated OpenAI's image-generating model, DALL-E 3, allowing users to create realistic images with simple text prompts. While this addition did not enhance Bing's search abilities, it did generate a significant spike in usage.


Google has also been actively developing its own AI tools, including the experimental "search generative experience" (SGE), which delivers conversational responses alongside search results. Google plans to embed its powerful large language model, Gemini, into SGE later this year.


The retooling of search by both Microsoft and Google reflects a shared belief that generative AI will revolutionise the way people search for information online. However, experts suggest that AI features alone may not be enough for Bing to challenge Google's search dominance. Google's established user base and its ability to leverage data from a vast number of searches give it a significant advantage.


Despite the uphill battle, Bing has the freedom to experiment as the underdog in the search market. Microsoft is also hopeful that generative AI will change how advertisers allocate their search spending, as AI-powered searches provide faster and more direct answers to users.


In conclusion, while ChatGPT has boosted user numbers and time spent on Microsoft's Bing, it has not been able to significantly impact Google's search dominance. Bing's incremental gains highlight the challenges it faces in competing with Google's well-established search engine.

 
  • Bing's market share has seen only a marginal increase since the integration of ChatGPT.

  • ChatGPT helped reverse the decline in user engagement on Bing, with a significant increase in monthly active users and time spent on the search engine.

  • Both Microsoft and Google believe that generative AI will transform the search experience.


Source: SCMP

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