Google Launches Next-Level AI System, Renames ‘Bard’ to ‘Gemini’

February 8, 2024 | by

I mean, really, “Bard” was a pretty crappy name anyway.

Today, Google has announced the launch of its next generation AI chatbot tool, while it’s also renaming “Bard” to “Gemini”, which is also the name of its AI language model that powers the system.

The new Gemini AI bot will facilitate a broader range of use cases, making it easier to generate text and images, in varying form, based on Google’s AI system, which now rivals other large language models in terms of compute and performance.

Or in the case of its new “Gemini Advanced” offering, maybe better.

As per Google:

In blind evaluations with our third-party raters, Gemini Advanced with Ultra 1.0 is now the most preferred chatbot compared to leading alternatives.”

Google says that the new Gemini AI is much improved for tackling complex tasks, “like coding, logical reasoning, following nuanced instructions and collaborating on creative projects”. Initial testing suggests that it is indeed a comparable system to the most advanced AI models out there, with tech writer Ethan Mollick noting that it’s “clearly a GPT-4 class model” in his initial review.

With the next generation of AI, Google’s also eyeing the future of search, and how it can maintain its web discovery dominance in the age of conversational queries. That’s still some time away from being a transformational shift, but eventually, as people get more used to simply asking questions, as opposed to understanding specific search queries, that will be the way that things go. And Google knows it.

As such, it’s been working to build more advanced systems that not only facilitate such queries, but also maintain its core business offering, in Search ads. Though it’s also hedging its bets there too, with Gemini Advanced set to be offered as part of a paid subscription package.

Which is a means for Google to further offset the development costs of AI, but it may also point to a major shift in discovery process, which will have implications for all businesses.

SEO has become an essential consideration of the modern business landscape, matching keywords and intent with the exact right terms and phrases displayed on your website. It’s a complex process, which takes significant work to get right, but the next stage of online discovery will be completely different, and could render many forms of current SEO process obsolete.

OpenAI has already been pushing things in this direction, through its partnership with Microsoft, which has seen more and more people turning to ChatGPT for answers, often in the form of systematic replies that take data from the open web, but don’t include referral links,

That could be devastating for online providers who rely on those referrals to maximize web traffic, and thus, ad exposure and revenue, but Google’s working to manage this element, and maintain its business, while also aligning with the next shift.

Which is coming either way, and while Google has also been cautious with its generative AI roll out, it knows that it now has to move quickly, in order to avoid ChatGPT from becoming the instinctive option for anyone looking to search on the web, as “Google” itself had become a noun before it.

The new Gemini system is the next step on this front, and it’ll be interesting to see how users react, and whether it can help Google maintain its position as the leading web discovery tool.

Gemini will be available at any time on Android devices, while Google’s also rolling out a new iOS app for the system.

Google’s Gemini Advanced AI system will be available as part of its “Google One AI Premium Plan which will be priced at $19.99 per month. You can find out more about Gemini Advanced, and how to sign-up, here.


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