Google will launch the test phase of its conversational robot, or chatbot, named Bard, announced the Californian company Monday, February 6, through the voice of its CEO Sundar Pichai, in a blog post.
The idea? To "explain the new discoveries of NASA's James Webb Space Telescope to a 9-year-old child", or "learn more about the best soccer strikers of the moment". But also, "AI can be useful in synthesizing ideas for questions where there is no one right answer," the company assures.
Concretely, the user should be able to write a question in the search bar, and ask Bard to answer it in detail. This artificial intelligence would work thanks to LaMDA, a Google chatbot unveiled in 2021. It would be a "lighter version", "requiring less computing power", allowing "to process a larger volume of returns" and a "larger number of users".
According to observers, this announcement was probably precipitated by the success of ChatGPT, the chatbot of the U.S. start-up OpenAI, on which Microsoft would bet 10 billion dollars, according to Bloomberg.
This software is not the first of its kind, but it has shaken up the ecosystem with the quality and diversity of its answers. Which have made ChatGPT the fastest-growing app of all time: after a public launch on November 30, 2022, it had over 100 million monthly active users by January 2023.
Bard, however, is expected to have a significant advantage over its competitor. Unlike ChatGPT, whose knowledge ends in 2021, Bard would be able to search the Web "to provide up-to-date, high-quality answers."
For now, only "trusted testers" will get the Beta version, "before making it more widely available in the coming weeks."