Google has unveiled its own version of an artificial intelligence conversation service called Bard. The company said it is opening Bard “to trusted testers before making it more widely available to the public in the coming weeks,” The Information reports.

Not coincidentally, the announcement came a day before Microsoft scheduled a press briefing in Redmond, Washington, at which it was expected to talk in more detail about its plans for OpenAI technology. However, Microsoft appears to have gained a lead over Google, in terms of public adoption of AI.

For now, Bard is powered by the company’s big language model, LaMDA, or Language Model for Dialog Applications.

Last week, CNBC reported that Google is testing some of these features with its employees as part of its “Code Red” plan to respond to ChatGPT, the popular chatbot backed in part by Microsoft.

“Soon, you’ll see AI-powered features in Search that distill complex information and multiple perspectives into easy-to-digest formats, so you can quickly understand the big picture and learn more from the web: whether that’s seeking out additional perspectives, like blogs from people who play both piano and guitar, or going deeper on a related topic, like steps to get started as a beginner,” wrote CEO Sundar Pichai.

The company gave an example of using Bard to simplify complex topics, like explaining new discoveries from NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope to a 9-year-old.

CNBC reported that Google’s AI chief, Jeff Dean, told employees at the time that the company has much more “reputational risk” in providing wrong information and thus is moving “more conservatively than a small startup.”

The company emphasized Monday that it will need rigorous testing, saying “we’ll combine external feedback with our own internal testing to make sure Bard’s responses meet a high bar for quality, safety and groundedness in real-world information.”

The potential inclusion in Bing turned the focus on Google and speculation that the company’s world-dominating search engine could face unprecedented competition from an AI-powered rival. But would such speculations turn into fulfilled “predictions”? Time will show.

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