Google parent Alphabet is planning to launch chatbot services and more artificial intelligence for its search engine and developers, marking a pushback against Microsoft in the race to lead a new wave of technology.
In a blog post on Monday, Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai said the company is opening up a conversational AI service called Bard to test user feedback before releasing it publicly in the coming weeks.
According to the blog, the experimental conversational AI service Bard is powered by LaMDA (Language Model for Conversational Applications), which Google launched two years ago. The CEO also added that Bard’s capabilities will be “a combination of the power, intelligence and creativity of the company’s large language models.”
Bard will seek knowledge based on responses provided by users as well as information available on the web. The company initially launched an AI system for testers, along with a lightweight model version of LaMDA. The current focus is on gathering feedback to make the AI system better for future applications.
Bard from Google is Alphabet’s competition with Microsoft-led OpenAI’s ChatGPT. ChatGPT has been in the spotlight for beating TikTok and Instagram to become the fastest-growing consumer app in history. ChatGPT is estimated to have reached 100 million monthly active users in January, just two months after its launch.
ChatGPT is able to quickly generate articles, essays, jokes and even poems in response to user needs. OpenAI, a private company backed by Microsoft, made it free to the public in late November. The company has launched ChatGPT Plus service to users in the US at a subscription fee of US$20 (nearly Rs 1,600).
In addition to Bud, Google is also focused on supporting other solid AI systems through its Google Cloud partnership. These AI systems include Cohere, C3.ai and Anthropic. It was recently reported that Google has invested close to $400 million (Rs 3,299 crore) in Anthropic.