Google’s Bard AI language model is finally making its way to EU countries with a two-month delay. This competitor to OpenAI’s ChatGPT boasts an impressive array of features and supports 40 languages. However, its functionality is currently limited in the Czech Republic.
The introduction of Bard was announced by Google’s CEO, Sundar Pichai, during the company’s I/O developer conference, where AI innovations took center stage. Prior to the unveiling, Google’s chief product officer, Jack Krawczyk, expressed his belief that the term “chatbot” was too restrictive to describe Bard’s capabilities.
Bard is designed to rival ChatGPT as a powerful language model. Although still in development, Google intends for Bard to be more than just an answer-generating chatbot. The company describes Bard as a tool that stimulates curiosity, expands imagination, and helps bring ideas to life by not only answering questions but also assisting in their development.
In practical terms, Bard can function as a virtual assistant, aiding users in tasks such as language translation, drafting official letters, and more. Initially, Bard’s main advantage over ChatGPT was expected to be its ability to draw information from the internet. However, OpenAI has since incorporated this feature into its own language model.
The delayed release of Bard in the EU was due to concerns over compliance with the region’s stringent data protection laws. Nevertheless, after two months of “productive negotiations” between Google and European officials, a compromise has seemingly been reached. The agreement is based on principles such as transparent data usage, user control over data sharing, and the ability to request corrections for inaccurate responses.
However, there will be certain limitations for Bard in the EU that users in the US won’t encounter. Bard stated, “Yes, there is a difference in how I operate in the EU compared to the US. In the EU, I am restricted from generating discriminatory, offensive, or harmful text. I am also prohibited from generating incorrect or misleading information. In the US, I face no such restrictions.” Additionally, image-related features are not available in Czech and other languages. While Bard can generate images and analyze embedded images in English, in the EU, it primarily serves text-related tasks and programming assistance.
Simultaneously, Google introduced its most significant update yet. Bard now has the capability to convert answers into spoken speech and customize the tone of responses. Furthermore, Google has enabled users to view conversation history, allowing them to refer back to previous interactions. The company has also catered to programmers, a key user group, by enabling them to export program code to services like Google Colab or Replit.