Confirming recent reports, Microsoft today announced that Bing Chat, its AI chatbot, is extending to non-Microsoft browsers like Google Chrome and Apple’s Safari. This development broadens the user base of Microsoft's ChatGPT-like AI chatbot, previously available only within Microsoft's own product ecosystem, like the Bing mobile app and the Edge browser.
Microsoft confirmed to TechCrunch that Bing Chat is indeed expanding to other browsers. Microsoft's director of communications, Caitlin Roulston, stated in an email, “We are flighting access to Bing Chat in Safari and Chrome to select users as part of our testing on other browsers. We are excited to expand access to even more users once our standard testing procedures are complete.”
Some users reported receiving a pop-up on their Windows 10 or 11 taskbar, inviting them to try Bing AI in Chrome. Alternatively, users can navigate to Bing.com from their chosen browser and click on the “Chat” icon to experience the chatbot. However, during our tests, Bing Chat was accessible in Chrome but not Safari, possibly due to the selective nature of the ongoing tests.
Built on OpenAI's GPT-4 model, Bing Chat provides a ChatGPT-like experience. However, initial tests indicate that the AI chatbot's functionality in other browsers may have more constraints than the original version. WindowsLatest.com, the first to identify the expansion, mentioned that Bing Chat in Chrome supports only five messages per conversation, compared to the 30 available in Microsoft Edge, and restricts the character count to 2,000 instead of Edge's 3,000.
Microsoft refrained from confirming these specifics or disclosing additional information about the Bing Chat variants when queried. The company also withheld details regarding the launch timeline of the browser expansion, supported platforms, or if the tests would extend to global markets.
Bing Chat also seems to be experimenting with a native dark theme, although this is not widely available yet.
Following its launch earlier this year, Bing Chat gradually integrated into other Microsoft products. In a few weeks, the new Bing was available in the Bing mobile app and Edge browser for iOS, Android, and desktop, and was integrated with Skype. Recently, Microsoft disclosed plans for Bing Chat's enterprise edition with business-oriented data privacy and governance controls. Concurrently, the company announced the rollout of Visual Search, allowing the chatbot to respond to queries about uploaded images.