Google Plans Release of its own Chatbot Bard, in bid to Compete Against OpenAI’s ChatGPT

Nishita Gupta
Nishita Gupta February 8, 2023
Updated 2023/02/08 at 2:00 AM

The internet giant said it would begin testing its new chatbot, Bard, with a small, private group before releasing it to the public in the coming weeks.

Google said on Monday that it would soon release an experimental chatbot called Bard as it races to respond to ChatGPT, which has wowed millions of people since it was unveiled at the end of November.

Google said it would begin testing its new chatbot with a small, private group on Monday before releasing it to the public in the coming weeks. In a blog post, Sundar Pichai, Google’s chief executive, also said that the company’s search engine would soon have artificial intelligence features that offered summaries of complex information.

Bard — so named because it is a storyteller, the company said — is based on experimental technology called LaMDA, short for Language Model for Dialogue Applications, which Google has been testing inside the company and with a limited number of outsiders for several months.

Google is among many companies that have been developing and testing a new type of chatbot that can riff on almost any topic thrown its way. OpenAI, a tiny San Francisco start-up, captured the public’s imagination with ChatGPT and set off a race to push this kind of technology into a wide range of products.

The chatbots cannot chat exactly like a human, but they often seem to. And they generate a wide range of digital text that can be repurposed in nearly any context, including tweets, blog posts, term papers, poetry and even computer code.

A picture of a phone screen showing a question posed about learning piano versus guitar and the response from Google’s artificial intelligence software.
The result of more than a decade of research at companies like Google, OpenAI and Meta, chatbots represent an enormous change in the way computer software is built, used and operated. They are poised to remake internet search engines like Google Search and Microsoft Bing, talking digital assistants like Alexa and Siri, and email programs like Gmail and Outlook.

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