Google and Microsoft are ramping up their AI offerings in a new wave of computing. Alphabet, the parent company of Google, has announced it will launch a chatbot service called Bard and incorporate more AI into its search engine. Microsoft, on the other hand, has plans to imbue AI into all its products and has a briefing planned for Tuesday.
Google’s update for its search engine reflects its efforts to bolster its service, while Microsoft is doing the same for Bing by embedding OpenAI’s capabilities into it. Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai has said that Google’s conversational AI service, Bard, draws on information from the internet and aims to combine “the breadth of the world’s knowledge with the power, intelligence and creativity of our AI.”
ChatGPT, a chatbot from Microsoft-backed OpenAI, has been one of the biggest challenges to Google in recent memory. It has turned away users at times due to its explosive growth, with UBS analysts reporting it had 57 million unique visitors in December outpacing the adoption of TikTok.
Google’s Bard chatbot is powered by LaMDA, Google’s AI that generated text with such skill that a company engineer last year called it sentient. However, the claim was widely dismissed by the technology giant and scientists. In a demo of the service, Bard gives users three answers to a query, as with its rival chatbot. Google is relying on a version of LaMDA that requires less computing power so it can serve more users and improve with their feedback.
Google also plans to give technology tools, powered by LaMDA and later by other AI, to creators and enterprises starting next month. The launch of Bard will be followed by a public release in the coming weeks after receiving feedback from users.
The rise of AI in computing reflects the massive change anticipated from generative AI, technology that can create prose or other content on command and free up white-collar workers’ time. The ascent of ChatGPT has been a significant challenge to Google, and how Google aims to differentiate Bard from OpenAI’s ChatGPT is unclear. The CEO of OpenAI, Sam Altman, will be attending Microsoft’s AI reveal event on Tuesday.
In conclusion, the new wave of AI offerings from Google and Microsoft shows how the tech giants are preparing for the massive change anticipated from generative AI technology. Google’s Bard chatbot and AI-powered search engine and Microsoft’s AI-imbued products are aimed at leading this new wave of computing.