Microsoft has announced that it is integrating its Bing chatbot into its popular smartphone keyboard app, SwiftKey, on both Android and iOS platforms. This new integration allows users to chat with the Bing chatbot directly from their mobile keyboard, eliminating the need to switch between apps. The integration comes with three major features: Chat, Tone, and Search.
The Chat functionality allows users to access Bing on the go for more detailed queries. For example, users can use it to find clever puns to respond to messages or quickly search for dessert pairings when planning a party with friends on mobile.
The Tone feature is designed to help users communicate more effectively by using artificial intelligence (AI) to customize their text based on the situation. This can be helpful in situations where users need to be formal in work emails or need help with word choice while learning a new language. The feature can make sentences sound more professional, casual, polite, or concise, depending on the context.
With the Search functionality, users can quickly search the web directly from their keyboard, eliminating the need to switch between apps. This can be useful when users are in the middle of a conversation and want to look up something quickly.
These new features in SwiftKey are available in all markets where the new Bing is available. While anyone can use the Search functionality, accessing Tone and Chat requires users to sign in with their Microsoft Account that has been approved to access the new Bing preview.
Microsoft has noted that the update is available now, and users will see the Bing icon above their keyboard once they have received the update. From there, users can click on the desired feature they want to use, whether it’s Chat, Tone, or Search.
It’s worth mentioning that Microsoft had initially planned to shut down SwiftKey on iOS last year, but later reversed that decision. By integrating Bing into SwiftKey, Microsoft is likely aiming to generate buzz and popularity for the keyboard app.
In addition to the SwiftKey integration, Microsoft has also announced that Bing is now available in group chats on Skype. This means that one member with access to the Bing preview can use it in group chats within the Skype app, just like on desktop. Microsoft has also made Bing available via Microsoft Start, its personalized news reading experience.