Microsoft has announced that it will significantly increase the prices for using the Bing search engine interface. Depending on the intensity of use, the costs will increase by up to 1,000 percent, automatically, from May 2023.
This surprising step could massively restrict competition in the search engine market.
Apart from Google and Microsoft, there are currently no serious and competitive full-text search indices for the (western) Internet. Search engines such as Ecosia, DuckDuckGo and Kagi, which have had some success in recent years, continue to build heavily on Microsoft data. Although these services often enrich Bing’s data, it doesn’t work without Bing.
If Microsoft, through AI integrations in the last few weeks and a tailwind of public sympathy successes, now restricts these possibilities through the price jump, the search engine ecosystem will suffer in the end. The duopoly of Google and Microsoft shows obvious problems again.