Google launches ChatGPT rival Bard in EU, Brazil
Google announced Thursday that its AI chatbot Bard was now available in around 50 more countries, including all 27 EU nations and Brazil, as it expands access to its answer to Microsoft-backed ChatGPT.
The US tech giant unveiled Bard in February but delayed its release in the European Union as the bloc plans to regulate artificial intelligence amid concerns about risks associated with the rapidly growing technology.
Google has raced to catch up with rival Microsoft, which has rushed to integrate ChatGPT-like powers in a wide array of its products, including the Bing search engine.
Bard is “now available in most of the world, and in the most widely spoken languages,” Bard’s product lead Jack Krawczyk and vice president Amarnag Subramanya wrote in a blog.
“As part of our bold and responsible approach to AI, we’ve proactively engaged with experts, policymakers and privacy regulators on this expansion,” they said.
The company said it would incorporate user feedback and take steps to protect people’s privacy and data as it broadens access to Bard.
The AI tool can now be used in over 40 languages including Arabic, Chinese, German, Hindi and Spanish. It was previously available in three languages — English, Japanese and Korean.
Google also announced new features, including receiving audio responses from Bard or answers in five different styles: simple, long, short, professional or casual.
Another new feature allows users to upload photos that Bard can analyse for information.
Last month, the European Parliament backed a draft law that will be the basis for the world’s first comprehensive rules for AI.
It includes specific provisions for generative AI systems, such as ChatGPT and Dall-E, capable of producing text, images and other media.
The parliament and the EU’s member states will negotiate on the regulation before it is approved and the bloc wants to strike a deal by the end of the year.
The rules stipulate that AI-generated content must be declared as such and bans some AI including real-time facial recognition systems.
The rise of AI has raised a slew of concerns, including the possibility that it could make a range of jobs obsolete.
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