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Google Launches New Chatbot "Bard" to Compete with Microsoft and OpenAI

Updated: Mar 22, 2023

Google has finally entered the chatbot market with their new AI-powered chatbot, Bard, designed to compete with Microsoft and OpenAI. With the potential to transform how we interact with technology, Bard will be available to a limited number of users in the US and UK, with plans to expand globally. Discover how Google plans to make a mark in the chatbot market and what Bard has to offer.

Google had been watching from the sidelines as Microsoft and OpenAI dazzled the world with their AI-powered chatbots for more than three months. But on Tuesday, Google finally stepped up to the plate with their chatbot, Bard. Although it will only be available to a limited number of users in the US and UK for now, Google plans to expand Bard to other countries and languages in the future.

While the release of Bard is Google's first public attempt to compete with Microsoft and OpenAI, the company is taking a more cautious approach than its competitors. They've faced criticism in the past for proliferating unpredictable and untrustworthy technology. However, the release of Bard is a significant step in protecting Google's search engine, their most lucrative business.

Bard is a standalone webpage featuring a question box that can instantly produce answers in complete sentences without forcing people to scroll through a list of search results. This feature alone could potentially help Google's products become more useful and fend off competition from other companies.

But while Google has been testing the technology behind Bard since 2015, they've been reluctant to release it because, like the chatbots from OpenAI and Microsoft, it doesn't always generate trustworthy information and can show bias against women and people of color. However, Google is well aware of these issues and plans to bring Bard to market responsibly.

Google executives pitched Bard as a creative tool designed to draft emails and poems and offer guidance on how to get children involved in new hobbies like fly-fishing. They're keen to see how people use the technology and will refine the chatbot based on feedback. Unlike their search engine, Bard isn't primarily designed to be a source of reliable information.

Similar to Microsoft's Bing chatbot and other bots from startups, Bard is based on a large language model, or L.L.M. These models learn skills by analyzing vast amounts of data from across the internet, but they can also get facts wrong and generate misinformation. While Bard may display inaccurate or offensive information, Google provides users with options to respond and provide feedback on the usefulness of the answers.

Google is exploring how AI experiences can show up in different products and plan to introduce more than 20 AI products and features in the future. While there's no clear way for Google to monetize Bard yet, the technology underlying Bard will be available to companies and software developers who wish to build their own chatbots or power new apps.

In conclusion, Google's cautious entry into the chatbot market with Bard represents a significant step to protect its search engine business while exploring the possibilities of AI. As with any new technology, there are risks and challenges, but the potential benefits could be enormous. Only time will tell whether Bard can compete with Microsoft's and OpenAI's chatbots, but for now, Google is taking a bold step forward.

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