Microsoft’s gamble of infusing Bing with the power of AI appears to be doing a fine job of driving more users toward the search engine. In a new post for the official Bing blog, Yusuf Mehdi (Corporate Vice President, Modern Life, Search, and Devices at Microsoft) mentioned that Bing, which originally launched in 2009, has now managed to cross 100 million daily active users, alluding to what is evidently growing appeal for the Google alternative. Mehdi exercised some modesty by stating that Microsoft still considers itself “a small, low, single digit share player,” but the new Bing’s novelties, which include a hidden celebrity mode that allows users to pretend they’re talking to Tom Cruise, Keanu Reeves, and other personalities, appear to be closing the gap somewhat.
From a Microsoft Bing Blog post:
We are pleased to share that after a number of years of steady progress, and with a little bit of a boost from the million+ new Bing preview users, we have crossed 100M Daily Active Users of Bing. This is a surprisingly notable figure, and yet we are fully aware we remain a small, low, single digit share player. That said, it feels good to be at the dance!
Of the millions of active users of the new Bing preview, it’s great to see that roughly one third are new to Bing. We see this appeal of the new Bing as a validation of our view that search is due for a reinvention and of the unique value proposition of combining Search + Answers + Chat + Creation in one experience.
Secondly not only are we seeing growth in new users, but we are seeing engagement growing as more people are conducting more searches daily.
From a Bleeping Computer report:
This week, a reader told BleepingComputer about another hidden chat mode called Celebrity mode.
While this mode is not enabled by default, if you ask Bing Chat about it, the AI will enable the mode for you while briefly describing how it works.
Once enabled, you can type #celebrity [celebrity name] or just #[celebrity name] to cause Bing Chat to impersonate the person. So, for example, you can have the chatbot mimic Tom Cruise with the commands #celebrity tom cruise or #tom cruise.
However, this mode has been built with some safety guards that attempt only to let you impersonate certain celebrities, such as Elon Musk, Tom Cruise, Taylor Swift, Kevin Hart, Dwayne Johnson, Beyoncé, Oprah Winfrey, Tom Hanks, Diddy, Barack Obama, Lebron James, and more.