Microsoft Answers Google Bard With Surprise Event, And ChatGPT May Be On The Docket

Microsoft has announced an event happening on February 7 during which the company will share details about "progress on a few exciting projects." The event, first reported by The Verge, will likely be about ChatGPT-related advances and how they are going to be an integral part of Microsoft products like Bing Search and the Office suite in the near future.

Interestingly, Microsoft's event news reveal comes merely minutes after Google announced Bard, the search giant's own take on ChatGPT. Bard will be rolling out publicly within the coming weeks, even though a small group of testers already have access to the tech starting today. Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai classifies Bard as an "experimental conversational AI service" that is based on its Language Model for Dialogue Applications (LaMDA) neural language model.

However, it appears that Microsoft isn't too far off from serving ChatGPT's smarts baked inside its own products. Just a few days ago, an early test build of Bing search with ChatGPT functionality was spotted, following Microsoft's announcement that the conversational AI will soon be writing emails for you in Outlook, among other things.

The race for next-gen AI products has begun

Just in case there was any doubt that tomorrow's Microsoft event will be highlighted by ChatGPT and related AI advancements, OpenAI quashed it on Twitter. OpenAI chief Sam Altman has just tweeted a selfie of himself alongside Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. Altman's tweet mentions that he is in Redmond, the site of Microsoft's headquarters, adding that he was "excited for the event tomorrow."

Now, ChatGPT is no stranger to collaborating with Microsoft. The software and cloud services giant recently announced that it was pouring around $10 billion into the AI startup, a deal that puts OpenAI's operations into Microsoft's Azure cloud containers, while also giving Microsoft access to crucial ChatGPT APIs. For the unaware, APIs are the secret code sauce that will allow Microsoft to put ChatGPT skills into its widely used software products like Word and PowerPoint. Earlier this month, President Brad Stone announced that "a small group of senior leaders and responsible AI experts" at the company had already started experimenting with the early build of ChatGPT last summer (via Microsoft).

Microsoft won't be alone in the race for next-gen AI supremacy. The immense popularity of ChatGPT triggered an innovation panic at Google, according to a report in The New York Times. Things got so desperate that founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin reportedly held a few high-level meetings to discuss plans about integrating AI skills into the company's own consumer-facing products, including the bread-and-butter money-maker that is Google Search.