Snap Inc, the company behind the popular photo messaging app Snapchat, has announced that its artificial intelligence chatbot, My AI, can now respond to users' messages with fully AI-generated images. This move comes as Snap continues to deepen its work in AI technology and aims to speed up its development of augmented reality (AR) features. My AI, which was built using startup OpenAI's ChatGPT technology, can help users with various tasks such as writing poems, searching for information and recommending lenses, which can add effects to photos and videos. The chatbot is now available free to all Snapchat users and can be used to respond to questions in conversations between friends on Snapchat.
Evan Spiegel, the chief executive of Snap, said that My AI's ability to respond with AI-generated images will be available first on Snapchat+, the company's premium subscription service that has reached 3 million subscribers. As AI chatbots have grown, concerns about AI plagiarising published works, providing inaccurate information or returning harmful responses to queries have also grown. Snap said it added new safety guard-rails to My AI, including temporarily restricting a user's access to the chatbot if they repeatedly ask it inappropriate or harmful questions.
In addition to the AI chatbot, Snap has also unveiled new AR mirrors that can be installed in stores to help customers virtually try on clothing items or see which accessories would match their outfit. Retailers Nike and Men's Warehouse are already using the mirrors in some stores, and they are part of an enterprise division Snap launched last month to help other companies build AR experiences for their own apps and websites. This venture could also help Snap diversify beyond digital advertising, which currently makes up the majority of its revenue.