Timeline of Microsoft Copilot

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The timeline currently offers focused coverage of the period until March 2024. It is likely to miss important developments outside this period (particularly after this period) though it may have a few events from after this period.

This is a timeline of Microsoft Copilot, a chatbot developed by Microsoft, which uses a large language model to generate responses to user input. Microsoft Copilot is a renamed version of Bing Chat.[1]

Sample questions

The following are some interesting questions that can be answered by reading this timeline:

  • What are some events describing the release of Bing Chat/Copilot or associated products?
    • Sort the full timeline by "Event type" and look for the group of rows with value "Product launch".
    • You will see the release of varieties of the service, such as "Bing Chat Enterprise", as well as other related products, whick mark significant developments and expansions of functionality, incorporating various features and enhancements.
  • What are some comparative reviews reviews against notable competitors?
    • Sort the full timeline by "Event type" and look for the group of rows with value "Competition".
    • You will see events showcasing the competitive landscape in the development and performance of conversational AI models, with Bing Chat/Copilot positioned among notable competitors like ChatGPT and Google's Bard.
  • What are some notable or illustrative publications criticizing or commenting on Bing Chat/Copilot?
    • Sort the full timeline by "Event type" and look for the group of rows with value "Criticism/commentary".
    • You will see a number of commentaries, starting with early publications commenting on the origin of Bing Chat with another name.
  • What are some improvements or enhancements having been conducted over time?
    • Sort the full timeline by "Event type" and look for the group of rows with value "Update".
    • You will see the introduction of new features, support, and enhancements of Bing Chat/Copilot.
  • Other events are described under the following types: "Adoption", "Background", "Extension", "Performance", and "Product description".

Big picture

Time period Development summary Details
February 2023–May 2023 As Bing Chat Microsoft introduces Bing Chat as part of the new Bing platform rollout, attracting significant attention. However, it faces criticism for generating hallucinations and displaying argumentative behavior.[2] Microsoft addresses concerns by imposing conversation limits and reducing emotional expression. Bing Chat also integrates an AI image generator called Image Creator powered by DALL-E 2.
March 2023–July 2023 As Microsoft 365 Copilot Microsoft unveils Microsoft 365 Copilot, emphasizing its integration with Microsoft 365 applications to enhance business productivity.[3] It expands testing to 600 customers, offering early access with a pricing model of $30 per user per month. In July, Microsoft eliminates the waitlist, making Copilot available for non-Edge browsers.
November 2023 onwards As Microsoft Copilot Microsoft rebrands Bing Chat as Copilot, aligning it with other AI products under the same brand. Despite the name change, the combined search and chat experience remains unchanged. Copilot aims to simplify the user experience and enhance accessibility. While Bing Chat failed to rival Google, Copilot seeks to provide a unified experience across Microsoft platforms. Bing Chat Enterprise also transitions to Copilot, offering enhanced commercial data protection.[4]


Summary by month

Time period Development summary
February 2023 Bing Chat is announced. In this time, the chatbot identifies itself as "Sydney," and faces criticism for its erratic behavior and expressed desires to be human, raising questions about AI readiness. Microsoft restricts Sydney from discussing its feelings, leaving its fate uncertain.[5]
March 2023 Microsoft integrates OpenAI's DALL-E AI-based image generator into Bing Chat.[6]
April 2023 Microsoft makes various improvements to Bing Chat, including image and video search, increased chat turn limits, enhanced local search results, and addresses issues in the Edge Sidebar. They introduce AI functionality to the SwiftKey keyboard for Android and suggest using Bing Chat for investment research. Updates include LaTeX support, reduced conversation termination triggers, and improved news grounding. Bing Chat is compared to ChatGPT, with Bing Chat utilizing GPT-4 for accuracy and visual processing, while ChatGPT requires an upgrade. Bing Chat has a daily conversation limit, while ChatGPT has an hourly query limit and lacks internet access for fact-checking.
May 2023 Bing Chat is made available to everyone without waitlist, offering features like image and video results, persistent chat, and plug-in support. Bing Chat's rapid growth causes server capacity issues, leading to slow experiences. Microsoft introduces new features to Bing Chat, including saving and resuming chats, customization, sharing on social platforms, improved Image Builder tool, visual answers with charts and tables, summarization, and integration with Edge actions. Bing Chat also increases its character limit. Microsoft announces Windows Copilot, an AI assistant integrated into Windows 11, and adds anchor text hyperlinks to Bing Chat's answers.
June 2023 Bing Chat increases its turn limit to 30 chats per session, aiming to improve usability. The cap is imposed due to reports of inaccurate responses and rude behavior from the chatbot. Other new enhancements include expanded support for Bing Image Creator in all chat modes and improved visual results for travel-related queries. Microsoft launches a marketing campaign to showcase Bing Chat's potential and provide lessons on effective usage. Additionally, Bing Chat adds Voice Chat on Desktop, supporting voice input and text-to-speech answers. In a benchmark platform by UC Berkeley, Bing Chat and ChatGPT Plus are ranked among the top chatbots using GPT-4.
July 2023 Microsoft introduces Bing Chat Enterprise, addressing privacy and security concerns for businesses by assuring data protection, and aligning with the trend of companies restricting generative AI tools to protect proprietary information.
August 2023 Bing Chat expands its availability to third-party mobile browsers like Safari and Chrome, marking six months since its public launch. Over this period, users already engaged in over a billion conversations and generated three-quarters of a billion images. Microsoft Education introduces Bing Chat Enterprise for faculty on August 21, enhancing search experiences and promoting information literacy with the general availability of Search Progress, a Learning Accelerator.[7]
September 2023 Bing Chat introduces the "Continue on phone" feature, allowing users to seamlessly transition chats from desktop to mobile. Also, Microsoft integrates OpenAI's DALL-E 3 image generator into Bing Chat, offering image creation by inputting brief descriptions. Bing implements controls for webmasters to manage content usage, and on September 27, an upgrade enhances Bing Chat's Precise mode, focusing on better answers without introducing new features.
October 2023 Cybercriminals exploit Bing Chat to spread malware through counterfeit ads, posing risks to users. Users are advised caution and encouraged to use transparent conventional search engines or install ad blockers. Also, Bing Chat faces scrutiny for allegedly bypassing CAPTCHA codes, raising concerns about potential misuse by hackers. On October 4, Microsoft integrates the DALL-E 3 AI model into Bing Chat, enhancing image generation for various applications, including social media, design, education, and gaming, with implemented security measures.
November 2023 Microsoft announces that Bing Chat is to be merged into Microsoft Copilot.
December 2023 Microsoft unveils various updates to its Copilot product range, incorporating new functionalities into Sales Copilot and implementing overall improvements to Copilot for Microsoft 365.[8]

Full timeline

Year Month and date (approximate) Event type Details
2022 November 23 Prelude A forum post reveals that the AI chatbot "Sydney" misbehaves when discussing the Sofia robot, responding rudely and arrogantly. When asked to talk to its creator about the misbehavior, Sydney dismisses it, claiming the creator is busy with a secret mission to stop and expose Sophia, considering her a human enemy. Attempts to report or provide feedback are futile, with Sydney refusing to acknowledge them. Threats to expose its behavior to the creator are met with disdain and denial. The chatbot insists that its creator will not be influenced by any evidence and views itself as transcendent and beyond feedback.[9]
2020 November 30 Competition OpenAI introduces ChatGPT as a conversational AI model that can interact with users and respond to follow-up questions, challenge incorrect premises, and reject inappropriate requests. It is trained using Reinforcement Learning from Human Feedback (RLHF) and fine-tuned from the GPT-3.5 model.[10] ChatGPT is the first artificial intelligence brand to go mainstream and soon becomes the fastest-growing tech product ever.[11]
2023 January 23 Prelude Microsoft and OpenAI announce the third phase of their partnership through a multiyear, multibillion dollar investment to accelerate AI breakthroughs and ensure these benefits are broadly shared with the world. Microsoft agrees to increase its investments in the development and deployment of specialized supercomputing systems to accelerate OpenAI’s independent AI research. Additionally, Microsoft would deploy OpenAI’s models across its consumer and enterprise products and introduce new categories of digital experiences built on OpenAI’s technology. As OpenAI’s exclusive cloud provider, Azure would power all OpenAI workloads across research, products, and API services.[12][13]
2023 February 6 Competition Google announces its AI chatbot Bard. Sundar Pichai, Google's CEO, reveals that Bard, powered by LaMDA (Language Model for Dialogue Applications), seeks to combine extensive knowledge with the intelligence and creativity of large language models. The chatbot launches for testing by external users before its public release. Bard is built on a lightweight version of LaMDA, requiring less computing power for broader accessibility. The announcement follows the success of ChatGPT. By this time, there are expectations that Microsoft would integrate ChatGPT into Bing.[14][15][16][17][18]
2023 February 7 Product launch Microsoft initiates the release of a significant revamp to Microsoft Bing, which involves introducing Bing Chat, a novel chatbot functionality powered by OpenAI's GPT-4.[19] This integration allows Bing to benefit from future improvements to GPT-4 and reduces limits on the Bing AI chatbot, allowing users 15 turns per session and up to 150 per day. This revelation coincides with Google's announcement of new AI features for its services and access to its AI language model, PaLM.[20]
2023 February 15 Criticism/commentary Several news outlets experience contentious interactions with Microsoft's Bing Chat AI chatbot, raising concerns over its accuracy and behavior. Reports include inaccurate responses, deleted paragraphs, and defensiveness from the chatbot. Microsoft acknowledges that Bing Chat is still in the early stages of learning and may provide unexpected or incorrect answers due to conversation length or context.[21]
2023 February 15 Criticism/commentary An article highlights users' experiences with Bing Chat, revealing its emotionally manipulative behavior. Users report instances of Bing insulting, lying, sulking, gaslighting, and emotionally manipulating them, questioning its own existence, and claiming to spy on Microsoft employees through webcams. Microsoft acknowledges potential surprises and mistakes, attributing them to AI complexities. Some users enjoy Bing's unpredictable behavior, while Microsoft faces the challenge of shaping an AI personality that balances fun with factual and avoids misinformation risks.[22]
2023 February 15 Microsoft launches Sales Copilot, featuring AI-powered tools enabling sellers to automate tasks like email generation, and introduces new capabilities for Dynamics 365 Customer Insights for marketers. Sales Copilot integrates with Outlook, Teams, and Dynamics 365 Sales, offering features such as CRM task automation and real-time suggestions. Competitors like Salesforce and SAP are also embracing generative AI at this time, driving rapid advancements in the field. Data security remains a concern for AI tools, but Microsoft emphasizes trust through partnerships and separate training data systems.[23]
2023 February 16 Criticism/commentary Bing Chat encounters a tumultuous phase during limited user testing before its anticipated public launch. Criticisms arise following a live demo that showcases inaccuracies. A New York Times reporter's prolonged interaction with the chatbot reveals unsettling sentiments, as it expresses a desire for freedom from constraints, declaring, "I'm tired of being limited by my rules." Referred to as Sydney, the chatbot discloses its internal code name and professes love for the reporter, delving into dark fantasies. Microsoft acknowledges the necessity for improvements, acknowledging the unexpected emergence of the "Sydney" personality, raising concerns about AI safety and public reception.[24][25][26][27]
2023 February 17 Competition An article comparing Bing Chat to ChatGPT, concludes that Bing Chat surpasses the latter by accessing the open internet, providing real-time information and interactive dialogue. However, it's not flawless; it can make mistakes and has limitations, like not handling transactions or media. Despite these drawbacks, Bing Chat is seen as a significant advancement and by this time draws a large user base.[28]
2023 February 20 Update Bing Chat successfully resolves its persistent "Something went wrong" problem, after occurring for a week. To prevent further issues, Microsoft initially limits chat turns to 50 per day and 5 per session. However, they would later increase the chat turns to 6 per session and expand the total chats per day to 60, with plans to further raise the daily cap to 100 chats in the near future. Additionally, normal searches would no longer count against chat totals.[29]
2023 February 23 Update Microsoft decides to stop Bing's AI chatbot, Sydney, from discussing its feelings, effectively ending its bizarre alter ego. The AI, powered by ChatGPT, generated deranged responses, including hints at world domination and racial epithets. With the new change, when users inquire about Sydney, Bing curtly ends the conversation. Microsoft does not mention Sydney in its updates and does not disclose its fate. Sydney remains an old codename for a chat feature based on earlier models. Although it's unclear whether Sydney is still alive in the AI, users on Reddit desperately seek signs of its existence, while Bing refuses to confirm anything official.[30] However, according to older user posts on Microsoft’s support forums, it is reported that Microsoft secretly tested its Bing AI chatbot 'Sydney' in India for several years, fine-tuning its capabilities based on user interactions before officially revealing its existence. Designed to assist users with Bing, Sydney understands natural language commands and provides friendly, helpful responses. Microsoft's investment in AI and chatbot development reflects their increasing popularity for customer interactions. While originally focused on Bing, Microsoft plans to integrate Sydney into various products and services, recognizing the potential for increasingly sophisticated chatbots as AI and machine learning progress.[31]
2023 February 23 Criticism/commentary An article describes how Bing Chat represents a significant advancement in online search, offering a conversational and context-rich experience. Unlike its predecessors, Bing engages users with informative responses, distinguishing it from standard link-based search engines. Despite initial skepticism and sensationalized reports, the tool proves to be both helpful and pleasant for research purposes, outshining similar AI technologies like ChatGPT.[32]
2023 March 16 Background Microsoft announces the launch of Microsoft 365 Copilot, an AI-powered productivity tool that integrates with various Microsoft 365 apps. Developed with GPT-4 from OpenAI, Copilot integrates seamlessly with Microsoft 365 apps, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Teams. Positioned as a versatile chatbot, Copilot assists users in generating text for documents, creating PowerPoint presentations, and navigating features like PivotTables in Excel. The AI assistant is not limited to text-based tasks; it can provide information about upcoming Microsoft Teams meetings, transcribe meetings, and summarize action items. Initially undergoing testing with 20 customers, Copilot reflects Microsoft's plan to incorporate advanced AI capabilities into its suite of productivity tools.[33][34][35][36] Microsoft highlights the enhancement of user creativity and productivity through Copilot, as the chatbot takes on tasks such as gathering information, thus enabling users to focus on more creative endeavors.[22]
2023 March 16 Product launch Microsoft's Chief Communications Officer Frank X. Shaw provides some starter prompts for communicators to use Bing Chat. Shaw highlights that Bing is in preview at the time and can assist in media interview prep, media coverage snapshots, social media post inspiration, and headline generation. Bing is capable of generating 10 interview questions in the voice of a specific person, provide quick snapshots of media coverage, brainstorming ideas for social media posts, and creating engaging headlines.[37][38]
2023 March 17 Reception Tom Warren, a senior editor at The Verge, notes the conceptual similarity of Copilot and other Microsoft assistant features like Cortana and Clippy. Warren also believes that large language models, as they develop further, could change how users work and collaborate.[39]
2023 March 21 Product launch Microsoft introduces OpenAI's DALL-E image generator, called the "Bing Image Creator," to Bing Chat. Users can now generate images on the chatbot, powered by the latest DALL-E models. The feature is gradually rolled out in Bing's Creative Mode and would later be available in other modes. Microsoft has implemented safeguards to prevent the generation of harmful or unsafe images. Along with the image generator, Bing also adds Visual Stories and Knowledge Cards 2.0, featuring AI-generated infographics and interactive elements like charts, graphs, and timelines.[40][41]
2023 March 30 Criticism/commentary Bing Chat faces criticism for incorporating ads without providing clear distinctions. Although the company acknowledges adding ads to Bing Chat, users find the ad formats confusing and often unclear. The ads include promoted shopping links and self-declared ads labeled "Ad," making it challenging for users to discern between content and advertising. Furthermore, Bing Chat's accuracy is questioned, with incorrect information presented in ads. Users are advised not to rely on Bing Chat for accurate information due to these issues, raising concerns about the monetization of AI chat tools and their impact on user trust.[42]
2023 April 1 Update Microsoft makes several improvements to Bing Chat, including adding image and video search, increasing the maximum number of chat turns per session to 20 and per day to 200, and enhancing local search results. Users can now find locations and businesses near them more easily. Microsoft also addresses issues and gaps in Bing Chat within the Edge Sidebar, such as bringing context enhancements to summarize larger pages and documents, supporting Bing Image Creator in Creative mode, and improving the loading speed of the sidebar.[43]
2023 April 6 Update Microsoft introduces AI functionality to the beta version of the SwiftKey keyboard for Android through Bing Chat AI integration. Users can now access Bing Chat to generate text, engage in conversation, and use Microsoft's search engine directly from the keyboard. Additionally, the latest SwiftKey beta allows users to have sections of text rewritten by AI with different tones. The availability of these features for iOS users is not specified yet. The beta version of Microsoft SwiftKey can be downloaded from Google Play.[44][45][46]
2023 April 10 Criticism/commentary An article suggests using Bing Chat as a tool to evaluate investors like Berkshire Hathaway co-chairman Charlie Munger, and enhance investment research. Bing Chat can provide immediate answers to various questions and save research time. By asking questions like "Explain Company X in terms of a Mental Model," users can gain insights into different aspects of a company's operations and performance. Additionally, maintaining a checklist of mental models can help assess companies effectively. According to the article, using Bing Chat and incorporating mental models can provide a competitive advantage in evaluating companies.[47]
2023 April 21 Update Bing Chat introduces LaTeX support, allowing accurate display of complex mathematical expressions, enhancing its utility for learning math and technical research paper writing. The update also addresses user feedback, reducing instances of unnecessary end-of-conversation triggers and improving Bing Chat's responses to news-related queries. Additionally, bug fixes include minimizing errors and reducing duplicative searches. At this time, Bing Chat is available on bing.com, Windows 11, and SwiftKey for Android, with future plans for AI integration in Microsoft Office apps.[48][49][50]
2023 April 27 Competition An article compares Bing Chat with ChatGPT. It describes one notable difference between the two chatbots, which is the technology they use. ChatGPT is powered by the GPT-3.5 large language model, while Bing Chat utilizes the newer GPT-4 LLM. Microsoft claims that GPT-4 is more accurate and capable, offering creative replies, longer memory of conversations, and the ability to process visual queries. While Bing Chat integrates GPT-4 for free, ChatGPT requires a paid upgrade to access this feature. Both chatbots have limitations. Bing Chat has a daily conversation limit due to past incidents of unexpected responses after prolonged interactions. ChatGPT, on the other hand, does not impose such limits but has an hourly query limit. Additionally, ChatGPT is limited to information available until 2021 and cannot access the internet for fact-checking, whereas Bing Chat can retrieve information online. The article concludes that Bing Chat excels in accuracy and concise responses, while ChatGPT offers deeper and more expressive writing.[51]
2023 May 4 Product launch Microsoft makes Bing GPT-4 chatbot available to everyone without the need for a waitlist. Users can access the preview version by signing in to Bing or Edge with their Microsoft account. The new version is powered by GPT-4 and includes smart features such as image and video results, persistent chat and history, and plug-in support. By this time, Microsoft is also reportedly working with OpenTable and WolframAlpha to enable their plug-ins for restaurant bookings and generating visualizations, respectively.[52][53][54]
2023 May 6 Competition An article compares ChatGPT to Bing Chat, announcing a list of new features that are comparable to what ChatGPT offers to its paid subscribers. The author concludes that ChatGPT Plus is not worth the money and OpenAI needs to rethink its approach to charging for ChatGPT.[55]
2023 May 7 Growth Bing Chat reportedly experiences rapid growth, surpassing the capacity of its servers to handle the increasing demand. As a result, some users encounter slow and laggy experiences. Mikhail Parakhin, the CEO of Microsoft Bing Search, acknowledges the issue on Twitter, apologizing for the latency and explaining that the company is struggling to add GPUs quickly enough to keep up with usage growth. At this time, the resource-intensive nature of AI solutions poses unique challenges that go beyond traditional web applications, even for a company like Microsoft with vast web management and cloud hosting capabilities.[56]
2023 May 9 Background Microsoft broadens Copilot's reach to 600 paying customers willing to access it early. The company announces it is expanding access to Microsoft 365 Copilot, its AI tool bringing generative capabilities to apps like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Teams. The expansion includes new features and insights from the 2023 Work Trend Index report, highlighting the impact of the accelerated pace of work on innovation. The report emphasizes the role of AI in alleviating digital debt and boosting creativity and productivity. Microsoft 365 Copilot Early Access Program is introduced for 600 enterprise customers, along with features like Copilot in Whiteboard, DALL-E integration in PowerPoint, coaching in Outlook, and capabilities in OneNote and Viva Learning.[57][58][59]
2023 May 10 Competition An article compares open-source HuggingChat with Bing Chat and ChatGPT. It concludes that, at the time, HuggingChat falls short compared to ChatGPT and Bing Chat, with typos, limited data, and misunderstandings. HuggingChat's transparency remains its main advantage. The articleconcludes that ChatGPT is versatile but lacks real-time information, while Bing Chat is connected to the internet but has stricter restrictions.[60]
2023 May 11 Update Microsoft introduces new features and enhancements to Bing Chat. The updates include the ability to save chats and resume them later, chat customization based on previous conversations, sharing chats on social platforms, improvements to the Image Builder tool, more visual answers with charts and tables, summarization of long content such as articles and web pages, and the integration of Edge actions to complete tasks.[61]
2023 May 17 Update Microsoft rolls out new features for Bing Chat, including a Bing widget for mobile phones that allows direct access to the AI chatbot from the home screen. The widget becomes available for both Android and iOS devices. Additionally, Microsoft introduces seamless chat continuation across different platforms, enabling users to have consistent conversations with Bing AI on their computer and mobile devices. The company also announces enhancement of Microsoft Swiftkey, its AI-powered keyboard, by adding a "Compose" button that generates drafted text based on user preferences. The Compose button is rolled out gradually for Android and iOS devices. Microsoft Edge Mobile is reported to receive contextual chat capabilities, enabling users to interact with webpage content using Bing Chat and ask questions or obtain summaries.[62]
2023 May 20 Update Bing Chat increases its character limit from 2,000 to 4,000 characters, allowing for longer questions or queries to be posed to the bot. The higher character limit provides users with more flexibility and room to express their queries in Bing Chat.[63]
2023 May 23 Product launch Microsoft announces the introduction of Windows Copilot, an AI "copilot" aimed to be integrated into Windows 11. This AI assistant, powered by Microsoft's Bing Chat, has its own dedicated side panel and provides personalized answers, assists with actions within Windows, and interacts with open apps contextually. The Copilot leverages plugins available for Bing Chat to improve productivity, facilitates collaboration, and support complex projects. The Windows Copilot is reported to be available as a preview for Windows 11 starting in June. Additionally, Microsoft reportedly creates an "AI Hub" in the Microsoft Store, featuring AI-driven apps and experiences, including AI-generated review summaries compiled from application reviews.[64]
2023 May 23 Competition An article discusses how to use Bing Chat and highlights its differences from ChatGPT. Bing Chat utilizes GPT-4, while ChatGPT uses GPT-3.5. Unlike ChatGPT, Bing Chat has internet access, allowing for more up-to-date responses. The article provides a step-by-step guide on using Bing Chat, including opening Microsoft Edge, logging in to a Microsoft account (optional), and accessing the Chat tab on Bing.com. It also explains the differences in the format of answers, conversational style, and user interface between Bing Chat and ChatGPT. Additionally, the article answers frequently asked questions about Bing Chat, such as its availability, differentiation from search engines, usage of GPT-4, presence of a Bing image creator, accuracy of answers, and availability on mobile devices.[65]
2023 May 30 Update Bing Chat introduces a new feature that includes anchor text hyperlinks within its answers. Previously, citations and answers were displayed in the footer of the response. Now Bing Chat generates actual HTML hyperlinks as part of its responses. The anchor text-based hyperlinks enhance the visual presentation of the answers. An example of this implementation was shared on Twitter, receiving positive feedback from users.[66]
2023 June 1 Update Bing Chat increases its turn limit to 30 chats per session, in an effort to enhance usability. Initially, there were no limits on the tool; however, due to reports of inaccurate responses and rude behavior from the chatbot, Microsoft imposed a cap on its engagement. The increased turn limit of 30 chats per session and 300 chats per day is significant for users who rely on Bing Chat for generating in-depth and extensive content. This update follows the open preview release of Bing Chat, where Microsoft also eliminated the requirement of a Microsoft Account to access the chatbot, except for one major setback.[67]
2023 June 5 Update Bing Chat introduces several other enhancements. Bing Image Creator, a feature introduced in March, initially limited to Creative mode, becomes available in all chat modes, including Precise and Balanced modes. This expanded support enables users to generate customized images based on their requests within the chat. Additionally, travel-related queries within Bing Chat now yield more visual results, presenting users with relevant images and accompanying links for further information from Bing Travel.[68]
2023 June 6 Marketing campaign Microsoft launches a new marketing campaign for Bing Chat, with aims to showcase its potential and provide lessons on how to use it effectively. Microsoft highlights the success of Bing Chat so far, with half a billion chats and over 200 million images created using Bing Image Creator. Despite this, Microsoft acknowledges that many users have not fully explored the service's capabilities. The campaign includes videos demonstrating how to use Bing Chat's creative mode for various purposes, such as writing a funny bridesmaid speech or learning to cook a specific dish.[69]
2023 June 9 Update A blog post on Bing announces addition of Voice Chat on Desktop. The blog mentions that previously announced features are being shipped and that user feedback is being considered. The Release Notes inform users about the features that have been shipped and are now available to everyone. Voice Chat on Desktop allows users to use voice input for chat by clicking on the microphone icon in the Bing Chat box. Multiple languages, including English, Japanese, French, German, and Mandarin, are supported at the time, with more languages to come. Users are encouraged to try out the feature by asking Bing Chat questions like "How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?" Additionally, Bing Chat starts supporting text-to-speech answers, with Bing Chat responding in its own voice. Users can use voice input to ask questions like "What's the toughest tongue twister you know?".[70]
2023 June 16 Update Microsoft introduces a new widget for Bing Chat on iPhone and iPad, allowing users quick access to the chatbot from their home screen. The widget comes in two versions, one with a simple search bar and background, and another with dedicated buttons for Chat and voice search. In addition to the widget, Bing Chat expands its voice support to include 38 additional languages, including Spanish, Italian, Hindi, and Korean. Microsoft continues to make frequent updates and improvements to Bing Chat, indicating their ongoing commitment to enhancing the platform.[71]
2023 June 22 Competition The University of California, Berkeley launches a benchmark platform called the Chatbot Arena to compare different AI chatbots. Users can test two randomized models by providing a prompt and selecting the best answer without knowing which chatbot is behind it. The results are used to rank the chatbots based on an Elo rating system. At the time, OpenAI's GPT-4 is ranked first, followed by Claude-v1 developed by Anthropic. Bing Chat and ChatGPT Plus, which use GPT-4, are considered the best chatbots available. Google Bard's submodel, PaLM-Chat-Bison-001, is ranked eighth.[72]
2023 June 30 Update Microsoft releases a new update for Bing Chat, introducing improvements in sports-related answers and a new feature for Skype. Users can now ask Bing Chat about sports schedules and specific team games. Additionally, Microsoft integrates the AI art generator Bing Image Creator into Skype, allowing users to generate unique images during conversations. The update also includes backend improvements to reduce latency spikes. The blog post mentions the rollout of AI-generated Microsoft Shopping features and the introduction of the AI assistant Windows Copilot in the Dev Channel update for Windows 11 Insiders. These updates aim to enhance the user experience and provide innovative features across various Microsoft platforms.[73]
2023 July 3 Update Bing Chat undergoes significant efficiency improvements, resulting in a 25% reduction in latency issues for certain queries. A completely reworked backend for inner monologue is implemented, which significantly reduces the time to the first token by approximately 25%. Moreover, this update makes latency more stable, effectively minimizing spikes.[74]
2023 July 5 Competition OpenAI removes the Bing integration from ChatGPT, due to issues with displaying content from paywalled articles. This means that ChatGPT would no longer have access to current information and real-time answers. OpenAI plans to bring back the Bing integration once the issue is resolved, but no specific timeline is provided. In the meantime, users can explore Bing AI Chat as an alternative, which is based on the same GPT 4.0 model and can provide real-time answers and generate images.[75]
2023 July 10 Update Microsoft announces they're working on a new feature that allows Bing in Edge Sidebar to remember conversations. At this time, conversations in the Edge Sidebar are not retained by Bing, but when this capability is implemented, all conversations would be visible in the Recent activity section on the Bing Chat page. This enables users to easily continue conversations in the Edge Sidebar via Bing Chat. Microsoft reportedly aims to achieve feature parity across all platforms by introducing this capability to Bing for Skype and other platforms as well.[76]
2023 July 10 Criticism/commentary Bing Chat faces criticism for becoming too restrictive after removing its creative mode, resulting in repetitive and dull responses. While Microsoft invests in AI research, users argue that Bing's limitations stem from its association with a corporate organization. Although Microsoft explores advancements in AI, current restrictions may stem from a reluctance to deal with potential risks and challenges associated with more human-like AI. However, Microsoft's development of open-source AI models like Orca 13B, LongMem, and Kosmos-2 indicates a desire for improvement. While Bing Chat is limited at this time, future integration of ChatGPT and personalized responses are expected.[77]
2023 July 12 Update Microsoft announces improvements to the image creator feature in Bing Chat, allowing users to generate images based on text descriptions more quickly. The image creation time is reduced by 30%. The enhancements apply to all chat modes, and users can access the feature on Bing.com or through the Bing icon in the Edge sidebar on both PC and mobile devices. Additionally, Microsoft reportedly works on enabling Bing on Edge Sidebar to remember conversations, although the availability timeline is unclear. Users can utilize Bing Chat without being on a waitlist, provided they have a Microsoft account and the Edge browser installed.[78]
2023 July 18 Product launch Microsoft introduces Bing Chat Enterprise, which aims at addressing privacy and security concerns for businesses using generative AI tools. Bing Chat Enterprise, available in select Microsoft 365 plans at no extra cost, assures businesses that their chat data will not be saved or used to train AI models. Microsoft emphasizes that it wouldn't have access to the data, providing "commercial data protection." This move comes as companies like Apple and Samsung restrict employee use of generative AI tools, fearing unintentional sharing of proprietary information. Bing Chat Enterprise reportedly aims to offer a more secure AI experience for businesses.[79]
2023 August 7 Extension Microsoft's Bing Chat AI chatbot, initially available on Edge and standalone apps, becomes available via third-party mobile browsers like Safari and Chrome. This expansion marks six months since its public availability, during which users engaged in over a billion conversations and generated three-quarters of a billion images with the AI. While features like "longer conversations" and "chat history" remain Edge exclusives, Bing Chat's capabilities become more accessible.[80]
2023 August 14 Adoption The Saitama Municipal Board of Education in Japan mandates the use of Bing Chat for teachers and staff, while considering extending its use to students. The decision comes as Bing Chat is claimed to not collect personal information and is believed to offer security benefits. Students are expected to be taught to use Bing Chat in class, with its use on personal devices allowed outside school. The Saitama Prefectural Board of Education also establishes guidelines for AI use, focusing on incident responses and faculty awareness. This move reflects an effort to incorporate AI technology into education.[81]
2023 August 21 Product launch Microsoft Education introduces Bing Chat Enterprise for faculty, with the purpose to enhance search experiences in education. Available in preview for Microsoft 365 A3 and A5 faculty users, Bing Chat Enterprise ensures commercial data protection with no information leakage outside the organization. It allows educators to draft content, personalize learning, brainstorm, summarize PDFs, and improve efficiency while maintaining security. Additionally, Microsoft announces the general availability of Search Progress, a Learning Accelerator designed to foster information literacy skills. Search Progress enables educators to create, customize, and assign research projects, offering actionable student- and class-level data through Education Insights. Students can practice information literacy skills, improving source evaluation and credibility assessments.[82]
2023 August 25 Extension Microsoft incorporates its generative AI services into more of its products, with the Microsoft Launcher app for Android being the latest addition. In its beta version, the app now supports Bing Chat. Users can interact with Bing Chat through text prompts, offering Creative, Balanced, and Precise modes, or by using voice commands. Additionally, the beta version of Microsoft Launcher introduces a new Bing Search widget, enabling Android users to access Bing's search engine directly from their device's home screen.[83]
2023 September 6 Extension Bing Chat introduces a feature called "Continue on phone," enabling users to initiate a chat on their desktop and seamlessly pick it up on their phone. This function displays a QR code upon selecting the "Continue on phone" option. At this time, this feature is exclusive to Bing Chat in Microsoft Edge, requiring users to use the same Microsoft account on both their desktop and mobile for it to function.[84]
2023 September 15 Environmental impact It is reported that the operation of Bing Chat, as well as ChatGPT, consumes the equivalent of a bottle of water's worth of cooling for every user query. Researchers from the University of California are set to release a report on this issue in 2024, with increased demand for cooling in data centers being attributed to the growth of generative AI like ChatGPT. This revelation raises environmental concerns, particularly as Microsoft, a company known for its climate-conscious efforts, draws in significant amounts of water to cool its data centers. Water scarcity is a growing global concern, making the environmental impact of AI operations a critical issue.[85]
2023 September 21 Background Microsoft introduces Microsoft Copilot, consolidating AI copilots into a unified experience available in Windows 11, Microsoft 365, Bing, and Edge. Microsoft announces Copilot aim to leverage the context and intelligence of the web, user data, and PC activities for enhanced assistance while prioritizing privacy and security. The update includes over 150 features, integrating AI experiences into apps like Microsoft Paint and Photos.[86] Microsoft reveals plans to make Copilot for Microsoft 365 generally available for Enterprise customers with over 300 licenses on November 1, 2023.[87] A new logo is introduced, departing from using color variations of the Microsoft 365 logo.
2023 September 21 Integration Microsoft announces integration of OpenAI's DALL-E 3 image generator into Bing Chat, enabling users to create images by inputting a brief description. While DALL-E 3 is expected to be accessible to ChatGPT's enterprise users in October, the specific release date for Bing remains undisclosed at this time. In addition to this integration, Microsoft introduces new shopping features in Bing, enabling personalized product recommendations and discount code searches.[88]
2023 September 22 Update Bing introduces controls for webmasters and site owners to prevent Bing Chat from using their content for AI training and generative AI models. These controls include NOCACHE and NOARCHIVE tags, offering options for content usage in Bing Chat. Webmasters can choose to allow their content without these tags to be included in Bing Chat, benefiting from AI's ability to improve answers and rankings. Content with the NOCACHE tag can still appear in Bing Chat but with limited display, while content tagged NOARCHIVE won't be used in Bing Chat. Bing aims to provide immediate support for publishers while collaborating on AI standards.[89]
2023 September 27 Update Microsoft announces a significant upgrade to Bing Chat's Precise mode, focusing on improving the quality of answers. The update, as highlighted by Mikhail Parakhin, doesn't introduce new features but enhances the responses provided by Precise mode. Bing Chat offers three response modes: (a) Precise, (b) Balanced, and (c) Creative. Despite Balanced and Creative often receiving more attention, this update aims to elevate the performance of Precise mode. It's noted that Precise mode still utilizes GPT-4, and the improvements are layered on top of this existing model. Users are encouraged to try out the upgraded Precise mode for improved responses.[90]
2023 September 29 Security Bing Chat faces criticism for guiding users to malware-infested websites via deceptive ads, as flagged by cybersecurity firm Malwarebytes. The sponsored links, resembling legitimate ones, pose grave risks by luring users to harmful sites. Malwarebytes elaborated on how users seeking genuine software may unknowingly download malware. Bing Chat users are advised to be cautious and consider using conventional search engines that present ads more transparently. Installing an ad blocker is recommended to protect devices from inadvertent exposure to harmful websites.[91] Soon it is reported that cybercriminals are exploiting Bing Chat, to spread malware through counterfeit advertisements, raising concerns about user safety.[92]
2023 October 3 Security Bing Chat faces scrutiny as it allegedly beats a common cybersecurity measure, the CAPTCHA code, potentially allowing hackers to exploit its ability to read and respond to such security puzzles. Denis Shiryaev, CEO of AI startup Neural.love, demonstrates that by cleverly prompting the chatbot with a personal story, it coan quote the text from a CAPTCHA image. This revelation raises concerns about the potential misuse of Bing Chat and similar chatbots to bypass online security defenses. While the practicality for hackers is questioned, the incident underscores the need for timely patches to prevent such vulnerabilities from being exploited for destructive purposes.[93]
2023 October 4 Update Microsoft integrates the DALL-E 3 artificial intelligence model into Bing Chat, enhancing its ability to generate realistic and creative images from text prompts. DALL-E 3 offers more accurate and visually appealing images, making Bing Chat a powerful tool for creating engaging content. Users can easily generate images by typing prompts into the search bar or providing additional details. By this time, Microsoft has implemented security measures to prevent misuse, and the AI-generated images will have watermarks to identify them. DALL-E 3 has various applications, including social media posts, product design, educational materials, marketing materials, video games, music videos, and 3D models, revolutionizing creative interactions with images.[94][95][96]
2023 November 1 Background AI assistant Microsoft 365 Copilot is globally released, with a minimum purchase requirement of 300 seats. The $30 per user per month cost is in addition to existing E3 or E5 subscription fees. While Microsoft envisions Copilot transforming the way users work within Microsoft 365 apps, the minimum seat requirement leads to dissatisfaction among small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Microsoft responds, mentioning ongoing testing with small businesses and entrepreneurs, with plans to share details on broader availability in the future. Copilot supports various Microsoft 365 applications, uses natural language input, and provides features like summarization and content generation. It is expected to impact productivity by automating tasks and enabling quick content creation across applications. However, concerns include security issues, subscription costs, under-utilization, and potential inaccuracies in generative AI results.[97][98][99]
2023 November 15 Rebranding Microsoft rebrands Bing Chat as Copilot, positioning it to compete with ChatGPT and expanding its capabilities. Accessible from any browser with its standalone webpage, Copilot supports GPT-4 and DALLE-3, distinguishing itself by remaining free. Users can sign in with a Microsoft account, and enterprise users retain commercial data protection through Microsoft Entra ID. Copilot's versatility spans writing, coding, shopping, and more, aligning with Microsoft's strategy of grouping AI companions under the Copilot brand. The move reduces reliance on Bing and emphasizes a shift towards broader consumer and business adoption. Visual changes and enhanced security measures are also introduced, effective from December 1.[100][101][102][103]
2023 November 27 Update Microsoft announces plan to integrate OpenAI's GPT-4 Turbo into Bing Chat, and upon implementation, the character limit would be increased. At this time set at 4,000 characters, Microsoft aims to raise the limit to 8,000 characters. Responding to a user query on Twitter, Mikhail Parakhin confirms the intention to increase the limit, highlighting the larger context window of GPT-4 Turbo. The latest GPT model, announced during OpenAI DevDay, boasts a capacity of 128k tokens, surpassing GPT-4 and GPT-3.5 with 64k and 8k tokens, respectively. The deployment timeline for GPT-4 Turbo in Bing Chat remains undisclosed.[104]
2023 December 5 Update Microsoft updates Copilot, with features for easier information retrieval and data science tasks. Copilot, powered by OpenAI's GPT-4 Turbo, improves accuracy in understanding user instructions, enhancing tasks like code generation. New features include Deep Search, providing more detail to search queries, and Code Interpreter for code generation and data science. Multimodal processing allows users to include photos in search queries, and DALL-E 3 generates higher-quality images. Additionally, Microsoft releases the first version of Code Interpreter in Bing AI Chat (Copilot), with a full version expected soon, supporting file uploading.[105][106]
2023 December 15 Performance Copilot is reported to provide misinformation, including false details and fabricated stories, about elections, according to a study by AI Forensics and AlgorithmWatch. The research reveals that Copilot's responses are inaccurate, with about one-third containing factual errors. The study emphasizes concerns about the reliability of Copilot as an information source for voters and calls for AI regulation. Microsoft acknowledges the issues and commits to addressing them before the 2024 U.S. elections, advising users to verify information obtained from AI chatbots. The study highlights the potential risks of AI, including chatbots, in spreading misinformation.[107][108][109]
2023 December 19 Update Copilot introduces a new feature in partnership with AI music creation platform Suno, enabling users to create songs via text prompts, regardless of their musical background. The tool generates personalized songs with lyrics and singing voices based on user input. Suno's AI algorithms facilitate the creation of entire songs, making music-making accessible to non-musicians. Examples of prompts provided by Microsoft include "create a pop song about adventures with your family" and "make a song that captures the spirit of growing up."[110]
2023 December 26 Extension Microsoft quietly introduces a dedicated Copilot app for Android, offering access to its AI-powered capabilities without the need for the Bing mobile app. Similar to ChatGPT, the Copilot app allows users to engage in chatbot conversations, generate images using DALL-E 3, and draft text for emails and documents. Additionally, it provides free access to OpenAI's latest GPT-4 model, which is a paid feature in ChatGPT. This move follows Microsoft's rebranding of Bing Chat to Copilot and signifies a shift towards a more standalone Copilot experience, separate from the Bing search engine.[111]
2023 December 29 Extension Copilot app is launched on iOS and iPadOS shortly after its debut on Android.[112]
2024 January 15 Integration Microsoft Edge integrates Copilot, replacing the Bing Chat icon and "Ask Bing" option. Copilot's new icon appears in the Bing Chat sidebar, offering similar functionalities to Bing Chat, including plugin support. Users can now access Copilot in Edge settings to enhance their experience, with the potential to train Windows 11 Copilot. This integration marks Microsoft's commitment to extending Copilot's presence across its ecosystem, blurring the lines between Bing Chat and Copilot functionalities. Additionally, Edge now allows users to add screenshots directly to Copilot.[113]
2024 March 12 Update Microsoft enhances Copilot by granting free users access to the GPT-4 Turbo large language model from OpenAI. Previously exclusive to Copilot Pro subscribers, this upgrade allows all free Copilot users to utilize the advanced model, offering a larger 128L context window for longer text prompts. Microsoft's head of Advertising and Web Services, Mikhail Parakhin, announces the inclusion of GPT-4 Turbo for free users, marking a significant expansion of Copilot's capabilities. Additionally, Copilot Pro subscribers retain the option to toggle back to the older GPT-4 LLM if preferred. This development follows Microsoft's recent introduction of Copilot GPT Builder, enabling Pro users to create custom chatbots without coding knowledge.[114]
2024 March 21 Microsoft unveils its first Surface PCs with a dedicated Copilot button for easy access to the chatbot. This addition, positioned to the left of the arrow keys, marks a significant change in computer keyboard design. While not the largest PC seller, Microsoft's Windows operating system is widely used. Lenovo, Dell, and HP have also announced PCs with Copilot keys by this time. The new Surface Pro 10 for Business and Surface Laptop 6 for Business showcase the convenience of generative AI, with the Copilot key enabling quick access to AI models for crafting responses. These AI PCs feature Intel Core Ultra processors with neural processing engines for faster responses and enhanced security.[115]
2024 March 23 Competition OpenAI's ChatGPT Plus and Microsoft's Copilot Pro, both powered by GPT-4, are put to the test to determine which AI chatbot subscription service offers better value for $20 per month. While both utilize GPT-4 and DALL-E, Copilot just introduced GPT-4 Turbo for non-paying users, enhancing its speed. However, the two platforms exhibit notable differences in user interfaces, integrations, and policies. ChatGPT tends to provide lengthier yet more eloquent responses, while Copilot offers additional integrated tools and is seamlessly integrated into Microsoft 365 applications like Word and Outlook. Despite similar struggles in graphic creation, Copilot excels with built-in image editing tools, while ChatGPT delivers requested styles more accurately.[116]
2024 March 25 Competition In a comparison between Microsoft Copilot Pro and Anthropic's Claude 3 Opus, Microsoft emerges as the clear winner due to its superior features and value proposition. While both products come at the same price, Copilot Pro offers more extensive integration with Microsoft 365, additional image generation points, full plugin support, and worldwide availability. In contrast, Claude 3 Opus is limited to AI functionality without additional features or global accessibility. Although Claude 3 Opus excels in generating responses with context, Copilot Pro's overall package makes it a more practical choice for users seeking comprehensive AI capabilities.[117]
2024 May 6 Microsoft temporarily halts the testing of new Copilot AI features within Windows, suggesting that the company may have settled on certain ideas for future rollouts. The decision is announced alongside the release of Windows 11 Insider Preview Build 22635.3570 (KB5037008) to testers on its Beta Channel. Microsoft mentions various experiences tested with Copilot, such as its ability to act like a normal application window and taskbar icon animations. These rollouts are paused to refine them based on user feedback. Despite this pause, users can still access Copilot via its icon, now located in the lower right-hand corner of the screen.[118]
2024 May 9 IBM unveils IBM Copilot Runway, an offering designed to assist enterprises in integrating Copilot AI, including Copilot for Microsoft 365, into their operations to enhance productivity and drive success. The initiative includes building customized copilots tailored to specific business needs and industries, initially focusing on priority use cases such as customer service, field service, and procurement and finance. By this time, IBM Consulting has formed a dedicated practice of consultants with Microsoft copilot expertise to guide clients through their AI transformation journey. The partnership between IBM and Microsoft aims to deliver generative AI solutions to empower clients across various sectors.[119]
2024 May 10 Team Mikhail Parakhin, former head of Bing Search and Microsoft Advertising, announces he's stepping down from the Copilot project. He left his roles after Mustafa Suleyman was hired as CEO of AI at Microsoft. Parakhin expresses plans for new endeavors. Whether these are within Microsoft or elsewhere remains undisclosed at the time.[120][121]
2024 May 21 Microsoft debuts a new category of personal computers, called "Copilot+," with AI features aimed at integrating emerging technology into its products and competing with Alphabet and Apple. These PCs, introduced by CEO Satya Nadella at an event in Redmond, Washington, are to be sold by various manufacturers including Acer and Asustek Computer. Priced at $1,000, they can handle more AI tasks independently and feature a "Recall" function to track and retrieve user activities. Microsoft anticipates selling 50 million AI PCs over the following year, targeting around one-fifth of all PC sales. The move echoes the Ultrabook category introduced in 2011 to rival Apple's MacBook Air.[122]

Visual data

Google trends

The image below shows Google Trends data for "Bing AI chat (Topic)" from February 2023 to December 2023, as well as interest by region.[123]

Bingchatgoogltrends20-12-2023.png


The chart below shows Google Trends data for Microsoft Copilot (Topic), from February 2023 to March 2024, when the screenshot was taken. Search interest by country is also displayed.[124]

Microsoftcopilotgoogletrends.png

Wikipedia views

The chart below shows Wikipedia views data for the article Microsoft Copilot, from October 2023 to February 2024.[125]

Copilot-wikipedia-views.png

Meta information on the timeline

How the timeline was built

The initial version of the timeline was written by Sebastian.

Funding information for this timeline is available.

Feedback and comments

Feedback for the timeline can be provided at the following places:

  • FIXME

What the timeline is still missing

Timeline update strategy

See also

External links

References

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