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AI competition: Google’s Bard vs. Microsoft’s Bing-ChatGPT crossover

Yahoo Finance's Allie Garfinkle explains the generative AI search wars as competition heats up between Google and Microsoft.

Video Transcript

RACHELLE AKUFFO: The AI search engine wars are heating up. Google recently announced its Bing ChatGPT competitor Bard, but users don't have access to it just yet. Meanwhile, if you're looking to try out the new Bing yourself, you'll have to join a waitlist. Until then, Yahoo Finance's Allie Garfinkle is here to give us a first look. Bing-- didn't think I'd be using that in 2023.

ALLIE GARFINKLE: I didn't either, Rachelle. So here's the deal. Microsoft's Bing ChatGPT crossover is officially rolling out. And I wanted to show you what it looks like because in some ways, at least, it looks a lot like the search experience we're all familiar with. So here's what the Bing integration looks like on a desktop, for example. Now, I'm going to be real with you-- that's a lot of text for me. But now, on comparison, let's look at it on mobile, which is a completely different experience. Personally, as a consumer, I liked this one quite a bit better.

Now, notably, the new Bing isn't available to everyone yet. And there is, as you said, a waitlist. Candidly, this is still really nascent. And to that end, Google unveiled a slew of AI innovations today for its search lens and Maps apps. However-- you said it, Rachelle-- the competitor-- the ChatGPT competitor Bard is still only being tested by a small pool of users. Now, looking at this-- and this is my opinion-- I think it's possible we could be looking at a situation where Microsoft is the first mover, but I don't know if I feel like Microsoft or Google has gotten the user interface or scaling right just yet.

RACHELLE AKUFFO: I mean, Google is so far ahead in terms of front of mind for consumers as well. So how competitive can Microsoft really be here with Bing?

ALLIE GARFINKLE: It's a fantastic question, Rachelle, because I'm going to give you actually some numbers to really set up the uphill battle that Microsoft is playing right-- is in right here. So Bing search market share is only about 9%, as compared to more than 80% from Google. So if search really is the prize here, Microsoft still has an incredibly long way to go. That said, this is the first time in a long time I can remember Bing making headlines. So the search landscape could really be set up for a shake-up. However, there's also another question from Google, which is that how far can Google really push this without coming under antitrust scrutiny?

Now, given how aggressive the FTC has been in cases against big tech recently, you have to imagine that's also really a concern here. So there might be a little bit of a gap to let some light in for Microsoft. But the race is on, and it's still early.

RACHELLE AKUFFO: And we'll have to see what that means for ad spend. I know there was some concern about potentially Google cannibalizing itself if it does end up coming into this foray. So we'll be keeping an eye on that as well. Yahoo Finance's Allie Garfinkle, thank you so much.