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Microsoft Adds Bing AI to Windows 11, Expanding Access Further

The AI, based on Bing search and technology from OpenAI, is intended to remake the way we use computers.

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Ian Sherr Contributor and Former Editor at Large / News
Ian Sherr (he/him/his) grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, so he's always had a connection to the tech world. As an editor at large at CNET, he wrote about Apple, Microsoft, VR, video games and internet troubles. Aside from writing, he tinkers with tech at home, is a longtime fencer -- the kind with swords -- and began woodworking during the pandemic.
Ian Sherr
2 min read
Microsoft's Bing AI on a Windows Computer desktop

Microsoft's already doubled down on its Bing AI, even though it's been criticized while still in testing.

Microsoft

Microsoft is adding Bing AI to a free update for its Windows 11 software powering desktop and laptop PCs, the company announced Tuesday, marking another way the tech giant is throwing its weight behind the nascent artificial intelligence technology it first announced earlier this month.

The new features will add Bing AI to the bottom menu bar of Windows computers, effectively making the technology more easily accessible. Microsoft said people who have already received access to test the new Bing AI will be able to begin using it in Windows after updating their computers. Those who don't yet have access to Bing AI will still need to sign up in order to join the wait list

"The Windows PC has never been more relevant in our daily lives, and this is increasingly the case as we approach the next wave of computing led by the mass adoption of AI," Panos Panay, Microsoft's chief product officer, said in a blog post talking up the new technology. "It is a new era in search, chat, and creation and with the new Bing and Edge you now have Your own Copilot for the web."

Microsoft's move to add Bing AI to its Windows software comes after it's quickly integrated the technology into its Bing mobile app, Skype chat software and Edge browser as well. Microsoft's technology combines Microsoft's less-popular Bing search engine with technology from startup OpenAI, whose ChatGPT responds to prompts for everything from being asked to write a poem to helping write code and even everyday math to figure out how many bags can fit in a car.

While the tech giant has received praise for the capabilities of its Bing AI, it's also been criticized for bizarre responses the system's given, including Bing telling a New York Times columnist to abandon his marriage, and the AI demanding an apology from a Reddit user over whether we're in 2022 or 2023. The reports have led some people to worry the technology isn't ready for prime time.

Microsoft responded by reducing the lengths of chats people can have with the test version of its Bing AI, while it also began testing different "tone" personalities for more precise or more creative responses. 

Microsoft's new Windows 11 software released Tuesday also included technology to link Apple devices to Windows, allowing iPhones to share text messages, phone calls and app notifications with Windows PCs. Microsoft said it's making that feature available to a "small percentage" of testers and will expand over time.

Editors' note: CNET is using an AI engine to create some personal finance explainers that are edited and fact-checked by our editors. For more, see this post.