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  • Tech - News - Tech Companies
  • Updated: April 15, 2023

Microsoft Edge: Exploring Easier Options For Bing Chat AI Access

Microsoft Edge: Exploring Easier Options For Bing Chat AI Ac

Image Credit: Gadgets 360

It is no longer news that Microsoft took the classic search engine war to Google after its synergy with OpenAI for Bing's chatbot. 

In an apparent bid for more exploitation of this simmering competition, Microsoft is pushing the frontiers of Bing utility.

Microsoft is experimenting with a new Edge feature that puts the web browser's vertical sidebar permanently on one side of your computer's screen.

The idea is to let users launch all the quick-access tools available in the Edge sidebar with a single click, without having to launch a web browser or having to open standalone apps for each one.

Of course, it's just another way for Microsoft to push its latest AI plaything, and with it, the Edge browser, too, which is far behind Google's Chrome and Apple's Safari in terms of market uptake.

The ability to detach the sidebar in the Edge browser and give it a permanent place on your Windows PC is currently limited to the testing phase. 

At the time of writing, the feature is only available in the experimental Dev and Canary channels for Edge, which means it will take at least a few weeks before it arrives on the beta channel and then rolls out widely for all Edge users.

Disappointingly, it appears that there is no experimental feature flag that you can enable to access this ability ahead of a public rollout.

Just to be clear about the chances of overlap, the sidebar in Edge can be hidden by tapping on the folder icon in the bottom right corner of the screen and can be opened again by just hovering the cursor over the Bing Chat icon in the top-right corner of the Edge browser.

An Apparent Productivity Gamechanger

The sidebar is an absolute productivity beast. Without going to the dedicated website for accessing crucial workflow tools, Edge integrates them right into the sidebar.

At the top is the new Bing Chat, which opens a small window where you can chat with the GPT-4-powered conversational model and get relevant answers to your queries.

Below that is a handy Bing search tool that lets you quickly look up relevant information without having to open a new tab in the browser.

You also have access to a handful of other nifty tools like a calculator, Skype, unit converter, dictionary, translator, Outlook, and cross-device file sharing via Drop.

There is also a dedicated option for accessing your Office 365 apps and documents without having to open an app or browser tab.

You can further customize Edge's sidebar by adding your most frequently visited online platforms like Facebook Messenger, Instagram, YouTube, Netflix, WhatsApp, and more, with a single click.

Now, imagine all that sidebar convenience, but without having to even launch the Edge browser.

That is exactly what Microsoft is doing right now by letting testers detach the sidebar and slot it neatly on one side of their Windows PC's screen.

Microsoft is essentially giving users access to a ton of tools and services without asking them to launch a dedicated app for each one.

The idea is not unique though, as the Opera browser already allows similar sidebar integrations, but it is nowhere near as fleshed out as the Edge browser.

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