Google Devising Radical Search Changes to Beat Back AI Rivals

The tech giant is sprinting to protect its core business by updating its search engine and plans for an all-new one.

Google Devising Radical Search Changes to Beat Back AI Rivals

Google employees were shocked to learn in March that Samsung, a South Korean consumer electronics company, was considering using Microsoft's Bing instead of Google as its default search engine.

Bing was a second-tier search engine for years. It became more interesting for industry insiders after it added artificial intelligence technology.

The New York Times reviewed internal Google messages that revealed Google's panicked reaction to Samsung's threat. The contract with Samsung was estimated to be worth $3 billion annually. A similar Apple contract, which will be renewed this year, is also worth an additional $20 billion.

Google has been racing to create a new search engine that uses A.I. Google is also updating the existing search engine with A.I. According to documents examined by The Times, internal documents reveal that the features are available.

Designers, engineers, and executives are working together in sprint rooms, to test and tweak the new features. The new search engine will offer users a more personalized experience, anticipating their needs.

Google spokeswoman Lara Levin said that not every product or brainstorming idea will be launched. But, as we have said previously, we are excited to bring new A.I. powered features to search and we will share more information soon.

Google's search engine is used by billions of people every day to find restaurants, directions and medical diagnoses. That simple white page with a logo in the middle and an empty space in the center is the most popular web page in the entire world. It was difficult to imagine that anything could be done to change it, as it has a major impact on people's lives.

Chatbots: A New Generation

A brave new universe. Chatbots powered artificially intelligently have sparked a race to see if the technology can change the economics of internet. It could turn today's giants into washed-ups, and create the next industry giants. Here are some bots you should be aware of:

ChatGPT is an artificial intelligence language model developed by OpenAI. It has made headlines for its ability, since November, to answer complex questions, create poetry, generate code and plan vacations. GPT-4 can respond to images and ace the Uniform Bar Exam.

Microsoft, OpenAI’s main investor and partner added a similar bot, capable of open-ended text conversation on virtually any subject, to its Bing search engine two months after ChatGPT’s debut. The bot's sometimes inaccurate, misleading, and strange responses were what attracted most attention.

Baidu, the search giant, unveiled China’s first major competitor to ChatGPT back in March. Ernie (Enhanced Representation through Knowledge Integration) was a failure after it emerged that a "live" demo of the bot had been recorded.

Google is worried about A.I. powered competitors ever since OpenAI, an A.I. start-up in San Francisco that works with Microsoft, showed a ChatGPT chatbot in November. Google formed a taskforce in its Search division about two weeks after that to begin building A.I. Two people who are familiar with the project but not authorized to speak publicly about it, have confirmed that Google is working on A.I.

Google has been obsessed with modernizing its search engine. The planned changes may bring new A.I. The technology is now in homes and phones around the world.

Samsung's threat was the first crack in Google’s search business that was valued at $162 billion dollars last year. Microsoft's A.I. work was not entirely clear. Google assumed that Samsung's decision to change its phone after 12 years was primarily due to Microsoft's work with A.I. Samsung may decide to stick with Google if the contract is still being negotiated.

Google employees were shocked to learn that Samsung, a company which produces hundreds of millions smartphones each year with Google Android software, might even consider switching their search engine.

After being told by the company that it was looking for volunteers to help prepare material for a Samsung pitch, some employees reacted to this news with surprise and emojis. One person replied, "Wow, okay, that's crazy."

Google's spokesperson stated that it was constantly improving its search engine so that users and partners would have more reasons to choose Google and that Android phone manufacturers were free to use technologies from other companies to enhance their users' experience.

Samsung and Microsoft declined comment.

Google has been researching A.I. Google has been doing A.I. research for many years. DeepMind's lab in London, is regarded as one of the most advanced A.I. The company is a leader in A.I. Projects, including self-driving vehicles and so-called "large language models" that are used to develop chatbots. Google has been using large language models in recent years to improve its search results. However, it has not fully adopted A.I. It has a tendency to generate false and biased statements.

The next step is to gain control of the next big thing in the industry. Google's Bard chatbot was released last month to mixed reviews.

The plans for the new Google search engine are still in their early stages. There is no timetable as to when the new technology will be released.

When users first use the system, it will learn what they want to know. It would also offer pre-selected lists for items to purchase, information to research, and other information. It would be more conversational, like talking to a person who is helpful.

According to documents, the Magi project is adding features to the current search engine long before it can be rebuilt. A person familiar with the project said that Google employs more than 160 full-time employees.

Magi will keep ads mixed in with the search results. Ads will still appear on the results page for search queries that can lead to financial transactions, like buying shoes or booking flights.

Google's primary revenue stream is search ads. Bard, its chatbot, does not display ads. The tech industry has anticipated that A.I. Answers on search engines may make ads less relevant for users.

According to a document, Google may place an ad under the computer code answers. It could also respond to questions about software coding or write code in response to a user request. According to a document, Google could place ads under the computer code solutions.

Google invited employees to try out Magi's features last week and encouraged them to follow up with questions in order to evaluate its conversational capabilities. Google will release these tools to the general public next month, and then add new features in the autumn.

The company intends to release these features initially to no more than one million users. This number will gradually increase to 30 millions by the end the year. These features will only be available in the United States.

Google is also exploring ways to allow people to use Google Earth's map technology with the help of A.I. Google's director of product management wrote that a chatbot could be used to search for music and have a conversation.

Other product ideas in various stages are being developed. A tool called GIFI uses A.I. Google Image Results can be generated with images. Tivoli tutor, another tool, would use open-ended A.I. to teach users a language. Text conversations.

Another product, Searchalong would allow users to ask a chatbot question while browsing the web using Google Chrome. The chatbot could be asked to find activities nearby an Airbnb rental. The A.I. would scan a page as well as the rest of the web for an answer.

Jim Lecinski said that the former Google vice-president of sales and services had been pushed into action. The company now has to convince its users that they are as "powerful and competent" as their competitors.

In an interview, Mr. Lecinski said, "If we were the leading search engine, and this was a brand new attribute, feature, or characteristic of search engines we wanted to be in this race too."

Daisuke Wakababayashi, Karen Weise, and Tripp Mickle all contributed to the reporting.