Microsoft Develops Way To Monetize AI Chat, Expand Ad Network

Microsoft has designed a way to give publishers, apps, and online services the ability to customize ad experience and increase revenue through investments in chat.

An API announced Monday allows publishers, apps, and online services to choose an advertising format for specific audiences that is natural to native experience. The chat API for ads can serve advertisements on chat platforms from Microsoft or other companies.

Microsoft’s search engine Bing was the first advertising-funded platform to integrate large language models in chat. This is only the beginning, according to Kya Sainbury-Carter, vice president of global partner and retail media at Microsoft Advertising.

A developer and third-party network will help to expand Microsoft's reach across the web, allowing advertisers to connect with many more consumers. The strategy will be based on chat similar to the way the company created a massive software developer network for Windows.

Microsoft continues to develop a set of tools for working with its Azure OpenAI GPT services called Semantic Kernel. The company describes it as “a lightweight SDK that lets you easily mix conventional programming languages with the latest in Large Language Model (LLM) AI "prompts."

The API is designed for custom GPT-based applications that go beyond the initial training set by adding to the model.

At the same time, these new semantic functions can be wrapped with traditional code to build AI skills, such as refining inputs, managing prompts, and filtering and formatting outputs.

“You can see signs of something much like the public Semantic Kernel at work in the latest Bing release, as it adds features that take GPT-generated and processed data and turn them into graphs and tables, helping visualize results,” Simon Bisson, a freelance journalist specializing in enterprise technologies, wrote in a post. “By giving GPT prompts that return a list of values, post-processing code can quickly turn its text output into graphics.”

Plug-ins are coming to Microsoft’s chatbot to interact with other websites and services.

Last week, Microsoft revealed major upgrades -- adding imaged and video, chat history, and some smarter Microsoft Edge integrations.

The major news for Bing is in the area of restaurant bookings. OpenTable will become the most useful of these by helping to make restaurant reservations from Bing chat.

If a search query recommends a restaurant, it will have the ability to find and book a time that works best.

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