Microsoft renames Bing Chat to Copilot as it competes with ChatGPT

Everything’s coming up Copilot — including Bing.

Today at Microsoft Ignite 2023, the company renamed Bing Chat, the AI-powered chatbot it launched on Bing earlier this year, to Copilot in Bing. Meanwhile, the premium, corporate-focused version of Bing Chat, which was previously called Bing Chat Enterprise, has also been rebranded to Copilot.

Why the name changes? Not to cause confusion, Microsoft swears — despite the fact that the company now has roughly a dozen products that share the Copilot brand.

“Renaming ‘Bing Chat Enterprise’ to ‘Copilot’ reflects our vision to create a unified Copilot experience for consumer and commercial customers,” Caitlin Roulston, director of communications at Microsoft, told TechCrunch via email.

That makes sense. But it could be, also, that Bing Chat didn’t move the needle much for Bing — and so Microsoft’s looking to divorce the tech from the search engine that launched it. An August report from StatCounter found that Bing failed to take any market share from Google six months after Bing Chat launched; Microsoft has disputed the findings.

Image Credits: Microsoft

It’s not just the name that’s new. Starting December 1, users who sign into Bing with a corporate account — a Microsoft Entra ID, to be precise — will receive the benefit of “commercial data protection” while using Copilot in Bing. That means their data won’t be saved nor used to train AI models, Roulston says, and Microsoft won’t have access to it.

“Copilot will update the commercial terms and conditions on December 1 to reflect that it’s a generally available product from Microsoft,” she added. “As part of this, it will inherit Microsoft’s universal license terms for online services … Over time, Microsoft will expand eligibility of Copilot with commercial data protection to even more Entra ID users at no additional cost.”

Copilot is now accessible in Windows in addition to Copilot.Microsoft.com and Bing, shipping in range of Microsoft’s enterprise subscription plans — Microsoft 365 E, E5, Business Premium and Business Standard — at no additional cost. Copilot will be included in Microsoft 365 F3 starting December 1. For all other customers, it’ll be available à la carte for $5 per month.

For more Microsoft Ignite 2023 coverage:

This story was originally published at 8am PT on Nov. 15 and updated at 3:20pm PT.

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