In a strategic move to compete with the ever-growing popularity of OpenAI’s ChatGPT, Microsoft has officially rebranded its Bing Chat as “Microsoft Copilot.” The decision comes less than a year after Microsoft’s initial foray into AI-powered search experiences.
Microsoft initially positioned Bing Chat as a competitor to Google’s search capabilities, but it has now shifted its focus towards challenging the ChatGPT platform. This rebranding follows OpenAI’s recent revelation that 100 million users engage with ChatGPT weekly, highlighting the intense competition between Microsoft and OpenAI for the AI assistant market.
Colette Stallbaumer, General Manager of Microsoft 365, stated, “Bing Chat and Bing Chat Enterprise will now simply become Copilot.” This name change comes shortly after Microsoft introduced Copilot as the branding for its chatbot within Windows 11, solidifying the transition away from the Bing Chat brand.
Microsoft is presenting Copilot as a free AI chatbot option, with “Copilot for Microsoft 365” serving as the paid version. The free Copilot service will have its dedicated domain at copilot.microsoft.com, similar to the ChatGPT platform.
Business users will access Microsoft Copilot with an Entra ID, while consumers will require a Microsoft Account for the free version. Currently, Microsoft Copilot is officially supported only in Microsoft Edge or Chrome, on both Windows and macOS.
The shift to Copilot represents a move towards a more standalone experience, distancing itself from the Bing platform. However, Microsoft insists that Bing remains an essential component of Copilot, with Caitlin Roulston, Director of Communications at Microsoft, emphasizing that “Bing remains a prominent brand and technology powering many Copilot experiences.”
Microsoft’s initial decision to launch its AI efforts within Bing aimed to capture market share from Google. At the time, Yusuf Mehdi, Microsoft’s Consumer Chief Marketing Officer, explained the choice, stating, “It’s a neutral vessel… people are basically neutral on Bing.” He also highlighted the value of the Bing brand’s awareness, estimated at around $200 million.
Despite Microsoft’s push for AI-powered search, Google still maintains a significant lead in market share, holding over 91 percent, according to StatCounter, nearly 10 months after the launch of Bing Chat.
Microsoft’s rebranding of Bing Chat to Microsoft Copilot signals its determination to challenge the dominance of AI interfaces like ChatGPT and to carve out its own space in the rapidly evolving world of AI-powered search and assistance.