Google’s Bard, rival to ChatGPT, now available in Phl

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Collaborative artificial intelligence program Bard, Google’s response to the hugely popular ChatGPT, is now available in the Philippines.

During the annual I/O developers conference on May 10, Google announced removal of the waitlist to access Bard and its rollout in more countries.

“As we continue to make additional improvements and introduce new features, we want to get Bard into more people’s hands so they can try it out and share their feedback with us. So today we’re removing the waitlist and opening up Bard to over 180 countries and territories — with more coming soon,” said Sissie Hsiao, vice president and general manager for Google Assistant and Bard.

“Not just that: Bard is now available in Japanese and Korean, and we’re on track to support 40 languages soon. As we’ve said from the beginning, large language models are still a nascent technology with known limitations. So as we further expand, we’ll continue to maintain our high standards for quality and local nuances while also ensuring we adhere to our AI Principles,” she added.

According to Hsiao, they plan to make Bard more visual both in its responses and prompts, including allowing users to include images using Google Lens.

Launched in March, Bard uses a conversational AI model that lets users collaborate with generative AI. 

“As a creative and helpful collaborator, Bard can supercharge your imagination, boost your productivity, and help you bring your ideas to life – whether you want help planning the perfect birthday party and drafting the invitation, creating a pro & con list for a big decision, or understanding really complex topics simply,” said Google.

It stressed that Bard is still experimental and that some of the responses may be inaccurate.

“With your feedback, Bard is getting better every day. Before Bard launched publicly, thousands of testers were involved to provide feedback to help Bard improve its quality, safety, and accuracy,” said the company.

“Accelerating people’s ideas with generative AI is truly exciting, but it’s still early days, and Bard is an experiment. While Bard has built-in safety controls and clear mechanisms for feedback in line with our AI Principles, be aware that it may display inaccurate information or offensive statements,” it added.

Aside from updates on Bard, Google also announced over 100 product updates and features across its platforms, including those related to AI.

These included Android updates on AI-enabled wallpapers and AI-powered capabilities for Workspace tools.

“As we invest in more capable models, we are also deeply investing in AI responsibility. That includes having the tools to identify synthetically generated content whenever you encounter it,” said Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and Alphabet, its parent company.

“Two important approaches are watermarking and metadata. Watermarking embeds information directly into content in ways that are maintained even through modest image editing. Moving forward, we’re building our models to include watermarking and other techniques from the start. If you look at a synthetic image, it’s impressive how real it looks, so you can imagine how important this is going to be in the future,” he added.

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