Chinese authorities have accelerated efforts to support companies that are aiming to develop AI.
China has given a big boost to artificial intelligence (AI) technology following its recent string of approvals. This follows after the Cyberspace Administration of China gave the nod of approval to at least three Chinese tech firms to launch AI services in the region.
To this end, Baidu, alongside Baichuan Intelligent Technology and Zhipu AI will be launching their AI products or services on Thursday, August 30, Reuters reports.
Baidu and Others Launch ChatGPT-Like Products
Baidu was the first to confirm the government’s approval. In a statement, the internet giant said that its ChatGPT-like AI chatbot Ernie Bot would be live to the general public on Thursday.
Recall that Baidu has developed Ernie Bot for a while now, with the company claiming in June that Ernie 3.5 had surpassed ChatGPT on several metrics.
AI startups Baichuan and Zhipu also claim that they will be launching their chatbots on Thursday as well.
China Keen on Supporting Domestic Firms for AI
With the approvals, China appears to have a vested interest in opening up ways for domestic players to compete with large language models (LLMs) from OpenAI and others. But, ultimately, it might also be a race for dominance in the generative AI space.
In line with this, authorities have somewhat accelerated efforts to support companies that are aiming to develop AI. Most especially, since technology is gradually becoming the focus of competition with the US.
Despite China’s best efforts though, it might still be too early to call whether the Chinese-made generative AI model would pose any real threats to what is already obtainable in the West. Besides, US restrictions continue to deprive Chinese technology companies of the best chips to use to develop their AI models.
Recall that, in early August, US President Joe Biden signed an executive order to regulate certain US investments in China. That executive order focused on three main areas, which include semiconductors and microelectronics, quantum information technologies, and AI.
So, China’s chances of competing may yet be a difficult one. As expected, however, Baidu’s share price has jumped excitedly at the news of the new approval. As of publication, it was up about 2.42%.