ChatGPT on iOS adds support for Bing, but locks it behind a subscription

Jun 28, 2023

OpenAI released the ChatGPT app on iOS about a month and a half ago. It now supports Bing, but there's a catch.

Access to Microsoft's chatbot is exclusively available for ChatPlus subscribers. So you can't access it for free. In case you didn't know it, the ChatGPT Plus plan costs $20 per month, and offers some advantages including faster response times, priority access, etc.

Last month, Microsoft announced that Bing would be the default search engine for ChatGPT. The Redmond company has invested billions of dollars into OpenAI. As a result of this partnership,  ChatGPT Plus on the web introduced Bing integration for users.

ChatGPT on iOS adds support for Bing

A recent update for the app, spotted by The Verge, brings support for Bing Search. It is not clear how the feature works, but according to the release notes, ChatGPT Plus users will be able to harness the power of Bing from within the app's settings. Head to the "Browsing" option under the New Features section in the app's settings, switch to the GPT-4 model, and select Browse with Bing. The feature is reportedly considered as a beta integration.

How to access Bing in ChatGPT for iOS

You are probably wondering how this could attract more users to the platform, especially considering that Bing's chatbot is available for free, so why should you pay 20 bucks a month to use it via a third-party app?  I get it, but as I mentioned earlier, ChatGPT Plus has other benefits, so maybe the addition of Bing can be viewed as a bonus feature rather than a crowd puller.

OpenAI's chatbot has one big obvious flaw, its database is severely outdated. ChatGPT has not been trained with data beyond September 2021, which makes it quite tricky to use if you need to use it with newer information. It does not acknowledge any events that occurred after 2021. Microsoft Bing's AI on the other hand relies on information from the web to provide you with up-to-date answers. With the integration of Bing, ChatGPT is now capable of searching the internet to answer your queries about current events, and should provide more accurate results. Both chatbots are good, but as for which one is better, that is entirely up to what you may need it for. They have their own rules and limitations, and have a unique style in presenting the data.

The update also improves the Search History function in the ChatGPT iOS app, you may now tap on a result to jump to the corresponding part in the chat. The AI-powered app added support for Siri and Shortcuts a few weeks ago, along with an improved layout on iPad to match the screen size of the tablets.

Want to try it out on your iPhone? Download ChatGPT for iOS from the App Store. There is still no word about an official ChatGPT app for Android devices. The integration of Bing could be beneficial for both companies, as OpenAI's chatbot can now pull information from the web in real-time, and Bing search will get more users on board. It's an interesting strategy, and could help the Redmond company outdo its bitter rival, Google Search, in the long-term.

ChatGPT on iOS adds support for Bing, but locks it behind a subscription
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ChatGPT on iOS adds support for Bing, but locks it behind a subscription
ChatGPT app for iOS now has bing integrated in it, but it is only available with a premium subscription.
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