Will ChatGPT Ever Be Able to Beat Google?
Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) believed it had discovered a “Google-killer” in its close collaboration with OpenAI and the ChatGPT artificial intelligence (AI) system. Six months later, market reports reveal that the AI-enhanced version of Bing still trails Alphabet’s (NASDAQ: GOOG) (NASDAQ: GOOGL) Google – and the gap isn’t closing.
This is the main lesson from a Wall Street Journal story published this week. In addition to reviewing the data, the paper interviewed various search market professionals. Former Google and LinkedIn employee Daniel Tunkelang described the new Bing attempt as “cute, but not a game-changer.”
Tunkelang’s remark effectively summarises the situation. Integrating ChatGPT into the Bing experience does not provide much real-world value to the search tool, and market research reveals that Bing did not gain many new users in this manner.
This chain of events highlights Google’s firm grip on the online search business. It also demonstrates that the truly game-changing days of AI tools are yet ahead of us. Long-term winners in this race that has only just begun are premature, but preparing for the impending sea change is a good idea.
Bing’s AI integration: Where dreams meet reality
According to industry data from analytics firms StatCounter and SimilarWeb, Bing held a 3% share of the global search market in January. The ChatGPT integration was launched in February, with the goal of providing a better search experience and stealing market share from Google.
However, Bing’s market share never increased significantly. StatCounter data shows no substantial change six months into the ChatGPT-enhanced Bing experience, and Bing maintains its 3% share. Over the same time span, Google’s leading share of this pie fell from 93% to 92%.
When looking at search shares in the United States, the picture isn’t much different. This is Bing’s best performance in years, yet its market share has declined from 6.7% to 6.5% in the last six months. Google’s share of the market increased from 88% to 89%. Again, little has changed.
Other studies show similar results. There’s no denying it — ChatGPT has failed to light a fire under Bing’s search traffic.
Why isn’t ChatGPT dethroning Google?
The almost totally unaltered market share statistics implies that it will take more than a popular AI toy to dethrone Google. ChatGPT, in particular, is not intended to find facts and existing web resources. It generates text based on patterns discovered in a massive database of text samples. If this programme finds an objectively valid response to your inquiries, it will not provide a quotable source.
The Associated Press modified its criteria for utilising generative AI in news coverage earlier this week. “AP has a licencing agreement with OpenAI, the maker of ChatGPT, and while AP staff may experiment with ChatGPT with caution, they do not use it to create publishable content,” according to the guideline statement. “Any output from a generative AI tool should be treated as unvetted source material.”
And I believe this is why people did not flock to Bing’s ChatGPT capabilities. These AI tools are infamous for making up things on the fly and presenting the ensuing rubbish as fact. During the early days of the ChatGPT hysteria, both ChatGPT and Google Bard fell into that poor habit during press events.
That’s not the kind of knowledge I’m searching for when I’m trying to figure out how to rewire the electronics in my dishwasher or bake a cake for my daughter’s birthday. Even a little “hallucination” may electrocute me or render the cake unpalatable; I’m not sure which is worse.
So it makes sense that people aren’t relying on ChatGPT’s contributions to Bing’s online search results — the chatbot wasn’t designed to serve that purpose, and its shortcomings are well known.