OpenAI Plans to Introduce AI-Driven Search Product

According to two informed sources, OpenAI intends to introduce its AI-driven search product on Monday, heightening the competition with search giant Google. 

While the announcement date is potentially flexible, it has not been disclosed previously. Both Bloomberg and The Information have noted Microsoft-backed OpenAI’s efforts in developing this search product, positioning it to rival Google from Alphabet and Perplexity, a well-funded AI search startup.

Regarding all this, OpenAI has chosen not to comment.

The timing of the announcement, potentially scheduled a day before the start of Google’s annual I/O conference on Tuesday, suggests strategic intent. Google’s events typically include unveiling various AI-related products, setting the stage for heightened competition in the AI space.

According to Bloomberg, OpenAI’s search product is an expansion of its flagship ChatGPT product. This integration allows ChatGPT to retrieve direct information from the web, complete with citations. ChatGPT, OpenAI’s chatbot solution, leverages advanced AI models to produce responses that closely resemble human-like interactions in response to text prompts.

Industry observers have often viewed ChatGPT as an alternative means of gathering online information. However, it has faced challenges in delivering accurate and real-time information from the web. In a bid to address this, OpenAI previously integrated ChatGPT with Microsoft’s Bing for its paying subscribers. Meanwhile, Google has introduced generative AI features for its own search engine.

Perplexity, a startup valued at $1 billion, was established by a former OpenAI researcher. It has garnered attention by offering an AI-native search interface that presents citations alongside results, including images and text in its responses. According to a January blog post from the startup, it boasts 10 million monthly active users.

OpenAI’s ChatGPT product made headlines as the fastest application to ever reach 100 million monthly active users upon its late 2022 launch. However, according to analytics firm Similarweb, global traffic to ChatGPT’s website has experienced significant fluctuations over the past year, only recently returning to its peak in May 2023. This trend has put pressure on the AI company to broaden its user base.

An initiative to broaden its user base, aimed at integrating updated and real-world information into ChatGPT, known as ChatGPT plugins, was discontinued in April, as stated in a help center posting on OpenAI’s website.

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