Subscribers of ChatGPT Plus will get priority access to new features and improvements, while OpenAI said it will continue to expand access to the free version.
OpenAI is offering a premium version of its popular ChatGPT chatbot, with a starting price of $20 a month.
The company said paying for a subscription will provide easier access to ChatGPT, even during peak times, along with faster response times by the chatbot.
Subscribers of ChatGPT Plus will also get priority access to new features and improvements as OpenAI continues to update the AI model.
The free version of ChatGPT will still be available, while OpenAI said the subscription payments will help bring free access to “as many people as possible”.
The premium version of ChatGPT is available in the US, with plans to expand access to more regions “soon”. OpenAI said it will begin inviting US customers from its waitlist in the coming weeks.
ChatGPT is one of OpenAI’s latest creations and is designed to respond to questions in a human-like way. The experimental chatbot can answer follow-up questions, admit its mistakes and challenge incorrect premises, according to OpenAI.
The chatbot became extremely popular towards the end of 2022 when its public demo was released, getting more than 1m users by 5 December.
The popularity has not slowed down, with a recent study estimating that ChatGPT reached 100m monthly active users last month, Reuters reports.
Despite the popularity, the accuracy of this AI model has faced scrutiny since its launch, with some users showing examples of the chatbot giving wrong answers or providing racist content.
Around the time ChatGPT crossed 1m users, Stack Overflow, a Q&A site for programmers, issued a temporary ban on answers created by the chatbot.
In its premium offering announcement, OpenAI said it has made several important updates to improve ChatGPT based on the feedback it has received from millions of users.
Attracting the attention of Big Tech
The success of the advanced chatbot has drawn the attention of Microsoft, who provided a multibillion funding boost to OpenAI last month. This came days after Microsoft said it would be adding ChatGPT to its Azure cloud services soon.
The computer giant also plans to give its search engine Bing a boost by integrating the chatbot.
Meanwhile, Intercom recently launched three services on its customer services platform that use the same technology that’s behind ChatGPT.
These services include a composer that lets customer support agents write shorthand customer responses, which the AI uses to generate a complete suggested message.
The new Intercom services also let users view AI-generated summaries of customer conversations and create AI-generated articles.
Intercom co-founder and chief strategy officer Des Traynor said large language models such as ChatGPT are a “massive step” towards a future where customer service is “automation-first”.
“We believe the advances made in large language models, spearheaded by OpenAI and that have manifested in ChatGPT, will be the most significant change the customer service industry has experienced in decades,” Traynor said.
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