ChatGPT, the Fastest Growing App, Intros Subscription Plan

OpenAI is piloting a $20 per month subscription plan called ChatGPT Plus for its text-generating chatbot. The paid plan offers benefits over the free version that include faster response times, access to ChatGPT even during peak periods and early access to new features. OpenAI will soon begin inviting U.S. customers to subscribe and said it plans to offer the Plus plan in more territories. Since debuting ChatGPT, the company has received feedback from “millions of people” using the viral to draft prose, edit content, brainstorm ideas, educate and assist with programming.

OpenAI is “actively exploring” other subscription tiers, including one that costs less, plans catering to business and enterprise, data packs and developer programs. “We love our free users and will continue to offer free access to ChatGPT,” the company wrote in a blog post, noting that “by offering this subscription pricing, we will be able to help support free access availability to as many people as possible.”

ChatGPT hit a million users in January, two months from launch, making it the fastest-growing consumer app in history, Reuters reports, citing a UBS study that says in January about 13 million unique visitors used ChatGPT per day, more than double the levels in December.

“‘In 20 years following the Internet space, we cannot recall a faster ramp in a consumer Internet app,’ UBS analysts wrote in the note,” according to Reuters (specifying that UBS relied on analytics firm Similarweb).

ChatGPT has taken the world by storm. “Despite controversy and several bans, ChatGPT has proven to be a publicity win for OpenAI, attracting major media attention and spawning countless memes on social media,” TechCrunch says, adding that the company is under pressure to turn a profit after a multi-billion investment from Microsoft.

“It’s a pricey service to run,” TechCrunch reports, citing “eye-watering” operating expenses that amount to “a few cents per chat in total compute costs.” OpenAI is expecting revenue in the area of $200 million this year, a fraction of the more than $1 billion invested in the startup to date.

Microsoft is working to integrate what Semafor says is a “faster and richer version of ChatGPT, known as GPT-4” into its Bing search engine in the coming weeks, “marking rapid progress in the booming field of generative AI and a long-awaited challenge to Google’s dominance of search.”

On Wednesday Microsoft introduced premium Teams messaging powered by ChatGPT for $7 per month through June ($10 beginning in July). Teams with ChatGPT “will generate automatic meeting notes, recommend tasks and help create meeting templates for Teams users,” according to Reuters.

There are reports OpenAI is developing a mobile ChatGPT app for future release.

Microsoft Will Use OpenAI Tech to Write Emails for Busy Salespeople, Bloomberg, 2/2/23
ChatGPT Creator Releases Tool to Detect AI-Generated Text, The Wall Street Journal, 1/31/23
Mangled Voice-to-Text Messages Are Embarrassing Users, The Wall Street Journal, 1/31/23

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