OpenAI Planning to Announce AI-Backed Search Engine to Compete With Google


OpenAI is set to unveil its AI-driven search product on Monday, as disclosed by two informed sources, intensifying its rivalry with search giant Google. While the exact announcement date remains subject to change, this development has not been previously disclosed.

Reports from Bloomberg have suggested that OpenAI, backed by Microsoft, is developing a search product to potentially challenge Google, as well as Perplexity, a well-funded AI search startup.

OpenAI has opted not to provide comment on this matter.

The timing of the announcement could coincide with the beginning of Google’s annual I/O conference on Tuesday, where the tech giant is anticipated to introduce numerous AI-related products.

The search product from OpenAI serves as an expansion of its flagship ChatGPT product, empowering ChatGPT to retrieve direct information from the web and incorporate citations. ChatGPT, OpenAI’s chatbot offering, utilizes advanced AI models to produce human-like responses to text prompts.

Industry observers have previously regarded ChatGPT as an alternative for sourcing online information, although it has encountered challenges in delivering accurate and real-time web data. OpenAI had previously integrated it with Microsoft’s Bing for paid subscribers. Meanwhile, Google has introduced generative AI features for its own search engine.

Startup Perplexity, with a valuation of $1 billion, was established by a former OpenAI researcher and has gained traction by offering an AI-native search interface that includes citations and images alongside text in its responses. According to a January blog post from the startup, it boasts 10 million monthly active users.

Previously, OpenAI’s ChatGPT product achieved the milestone of becoming the fastest application to reach 100 million monthly active users after its late 2022 launch. However, global traffic to ChatGPT’s website experienced fluctuations over the past year and is only now returning to its peak in May 2023, according to analytics firm Similarweb. Consequently, the AI company is under pressure to broaden its user base.

An earlier initiative to incorporate updated and real-world information into ChatGPT, known as ChatGPT plugins, was retired in April, as indicated by a help center posting on OpenAI’s website.