Microsoft CEO Nadella calls AI-powered search biggest thing for company since cloud 15 years ago

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said on Tuesday that artificial intelligence-powered search is the biggest thing for his company in the nine years he’s been at the helm.

“I haven’t seen anything like this since I would say 2007-2008, when the cloud was first coming out,” Nadella told CNBC’s Jon Forte in an interview.

Microsoft invited reporters to its headquarters in Redmond, Washington, for an event centered around new AI-powered updates to the company’s Bing search engine and Edge browser. Bang, which is far from it. Google Search will now allow users to chat in a way that provides more detailed answers to questions.

The updates to Bing and Edge will launch on Tuesday in a limited preview on desktop, meaning users will get a limited number of queries to search for during the initial period.

Nadella said search is a very profitable business, so this development represents a huge opportunity for Microsoft.

“I’ve never felt this free in terms of opportunity in the coming days,” he told CNBC.

Microsoft’s event on Tuesday follows the company’s January announcement of a multibillion-dollar investment in ChatGPT maker OpenAI. The agreement marks the third phase of the partnership between the two companies, following Microsoft’s previous investments in 2019 and 2021.

ChatGPT automatically generates text based on text input in a way that is more innovative and creative than chatbots of the past. The web-based tool went viral after its debut in November. Tech executives and venture capitalists also talked about it on Twitter. Comparison It was the debut of Apple’s iPhone in 2007.

On Monday, Google announced an AI chatbot technology called Bard that will launch in the coming weeks. Bard will compete directly with ChatGPT.

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman attended Microsoft’s Tuesday event and confirmed that Microsoft has incorporated some of OpenAI’s GPT-3.5 language technologies into Bing to improve its capabilities.

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman at the Microsoft event

Jordan Novet | CNBC

“I think I’ve been waiting for this for 20 years so I’m very happy that it’s here,” Altman said during the presentation.

Nadella was promoted to CEO in 2014 after running the company’s cloud business. He presided over Microsoft’s expensive and risky move from on-premises servers to cloud infrastructure. This was a huge boon for a company that had largely missed out on the transition to mobile computing.

Microsoft Azure, the core of the company’s cloud unit, ranks second. Amazon Ahead of Google in the web services and cloud infrastructure market.

“You can only be relevant in technology if you are good enough to see the waves of change and then readjust your technology and innovation agenda and business model agenda,” Nadella said. “We’ve been through some pretty tough situations. The last one we went through was obviously mobile and cloud. We caught one, we missed one.”

—CNBC’s Jordan Novett contributed to this report.

Watch: Google’s AI Service vs ChatGPT

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