Microsoft this week launched (opens in new tab) a pilot program that will see chat bots come to Bing search results. Targeted at advertisers, the chat bot extensions will let companies connect with customers who may have questions using a chat bot extension.
Microsoft is testing this out with a limited group of advertisers as part of a pilot program. But if you want to get an early look at the way it works, you can search Bing for Monsoon Restaurant Seattle, which already has a bot extension up and running. Tucked away in the business information box at the top of the results page is the option to ask the Monsoon Restaurant bot for help. Simply click the "Chat" button and a chat window connected to your Skype will pop up in the lower-right corner of the browser window. From there, you can ask questions about things like hours, parking, dietary restrictions, and more.
Bing already does a pretty good job of surfacing useful information about businesses on its results pages, but a more interactive way to field questions could help customers drill down and find exactly what they're looking for more quickly. Expect to see more bot extensions pop up for businesses over time.
Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the Editor in Chief for Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl. Got a hot tip? Send it to email@example.com.
When this feature by release for all users
I'm just waiting for them to pull the plug on Bing. After apple changed to google it can only go downwards, especially because Windows is shrinking.
I am so glad i use duck Duck go, just a simple search engine which does what it is suppose to do, search and no gimmicks.,
Almost all of MS announcements never gets released Never seen a bot on any results
I'm amazed at the general levels of negativity here on WC. Surely, if you don't like what you see, you are free to go elsewhere. After all, too many seem to think that the grass is greener... I for one, don't see the use of 'Bots' to help with Bing searches is a negative. Only time shall tell whether there is going to be a long term benefit. Let's not condemn the idea before it has half a chance.
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