Chinese internet search major Baidu is planning to launch an artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot service similar to OpenAI’s ChatGPT in March.
The technology firm plans to launch the service as a standalone application, a person familiar with the development told Reuters.
Baidu will gradually merge the chat bot into its search engine, said the person, who declined to be identified as the information is confidential.
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ChatGPT’s technology works by learning from vast amounts of data on how to answer prompts by users in a human-like manner. It offers information like a search engine or even prose like an aspiring novelist.
Chatbots in China currently focus on social interaction whereas ChatGPT performs better at more professional tasks, such as programming and essay writing.
Baidu plans to incorporate ChatGPT-like bot-generated results when users make search requests, instead of only links, the person said. Baidu declined to comment.
Microsoft has a $1 billion investment in San Francisco-based OpenAI that it has looked at increasing. The tech giant has also worked to add OpenAI’s image-generation software to its Bing search engine in a new challenge to Alphabet’s Google.
Beijing-based Baidu has been investing heavily in AI technology, including in cloud services, chips and autonomous driving, as it looks to diversify its revenue sources.
At a developer conference last month, Baidu unveiled three AI-powered “creators” whose technology allows them to assume the roles of screenwriter, illustrator, editor or animator.
- Reuters, with additional editing by Vishakha Saxena
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