Europe 1 with AFP / Photo credit: Nikos Pekiaridis / NurPhoto / NurPhoto via AFP 11:09 am, July 13, 2023

On Thursday, Google announced the launch of Bard, an artificial intelligence competitor to ChatGPT. The tool is now available in about fifty countries, including the European Union and Brazil, which have so far been avoided for regulatory reasons.

Google announced Thursday the launch of Bard, its artificial intelligence tool competing with ChatGPT, in about fifty new countries including the European Union and Brazil, so far avoided for regulatory reasons.

"Bard is now available in most countries around the world and in the most widely spoken languages," said in a blog post the American giant, which had presented in February this tool to respond to ChatGPT, the flagship software of OpenAI funded mainly by Microsoft. "We have proactively collaborated with experts, policymakers and regulators to lead this expansion," Google said.

About forty languages

Bard's delayed launch in the EU had been interpreted as a precaution by Google in the face of Brussels' desire to regulate artificial intelligence algorithms, which raise many fears about privacy, disinformation or respect for intellectual property.

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In Brazil, Alphabet (Google's parent company) launched a communication campaign in the spring against a project to regulate content on the Internet. Trilingual so far (English, Japanese and Korean), Bard will now be able to express himself in forty languages including Arabic, German, Chinese, Spanish, French and Hindi, according to Google. They may also state their oral answers, adapt the style of their answers in professional or informal language, or extract information from an image. Finally, it will be possible to continue old conversations with artificial intelligence, a feature already available on ChatGPT.

Personal assistants?

Chatbots, touted as an alternative to traditional online search, have been a runaway success since ChatGPT's release in November 2022. It is even integrated into the Bing search engine and other tools of the American giant Microsoft, which finances the Californian start-up.

To stay in the race, Google had to accelerate its own AI announcements. Its boss Sundar Pichai announced in May new features for the search engine and for the suite of online services (Maps, Gmail, Docs), allowing users to exchange directly with the firm's language model, called PaLM 2. The two competitors are competing with ads with one stated goal: that their platforms equipped with generative AI become the privileged personal assistants of users.