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Thursday, September 28, 2023

Chinese Tech companies join AI chatbot craze

BusinessTechnologyChinese Tech companies join AI chatbot craze
  • The latest craze in the tech world is artificial intelligence-powered chatbots, with the standout being OpenAI’s ChatGPT, which has taken the industry by storm since its launch in November. This advanced conversational bot has sparked a mad dash among Chinese tech firms to create similar products, as ChatGPT uses machine learning to generate text responses.

Chinese tech companies are in a race to launch AI-powered chatbots and products similar to OpenAI’s ChatGPT. This advanced conversational technology has taken the world by storm since its November launch.

In order to keep up, Chinese enterprises must invest more in improving algorithm models, natural language processing abilities, and computing power. However, industry experts warn that the hype around the ChatGPT-like concept may be overblown and urge rational investment in the stock market.

Additionally, the rise of ChatGPT-style AI tools raises ethical concerns, such as privacy and data security, copyright protection, and potential academic cheating.

Alibaba Group has confirmed that it is developing its own ChatGPT-style AI tool, which is currently undergoing internal testing. This move aligns with Alibaba’s focus on frontier innovations, such as large language models and generative AI, as part of their mission at Damo Academy, a research institute launched in 2017.

Baidu, China’s largest search engine company, has also announced an AI chatbot project, called Ernie Bot, which will complete internal testing in March before being released to the public. Baidu has invested heavily in the development of its Ernie system, a large-scale machine-learning model that has been in the works for several years.

Other Chinese tech companies, such as NetEase and iFlytek, are also entering the chatbot space. NetEase’s education subsidiary Youdao is working on AI-generated content, with plans to apply it to the education sector. iFlytek plans to use ChatGPT-related technology in its learning machines.

However, the Securities Times warned against the risks of blindly investing in ChatGPT-concept stocks. Many new ideas, it says, have not been commercialized, and some concepts are hyped up for no reason. The Shanghai Stock Exchange has also issued supervisory letters to Cloudwalk Technology and Speechocean, after a recent surge in their share prices. Both AI companies saw their shares drop on Thursday, by 9.35% and 2.68% respectively.

Co-director of the Digital Economy and Financial Innovation Research Center at Zhejiang University’s International Business School, Pan Helin, cautions that the application of ChatGPT technology is still in its infancy. There is a lack of clarity around its commercial use scenarios and profit model. To make progress, Chinese companies should invest more in fundamental R&D to enhance their comprehensive innovation abilities.

However, the use of ChatGPT-style conversational chatbots also raises concerns about ethics and privacy, according to Guo Tao, deputy head of the China Electronic Commerce Expert Service Center. There is still much work to be done before AI-generated content can be widely commercialized, as the supporting technologies, related laws, and regulations are still far from mature.

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