According to an internal email obtained by Axios, Google plans to significantly revamp its Assistant digital assistant to utilize new AI technologies similar to ChatGPT and the company’s Bard chatbot.
The change signals a major shift in strategy for Google and how Assistant will work for consumers, developers, and employees.
Google plans to support the new AI-powered Assistant and the original version.
Google Begins Company Reorganization
The email, sent by Google VP Peeyush Ranjan and Director of Product Duke Dukellis on Monday, said preliminary work on the new mobile version of Assistant has started.
According to the email, as part of the transition, Google is reorganizing the teams that work on Assistant and making “a small number of layoffs” related to the changes.
The layoffs will impact dozens of jobs out of the thousands who work on Assistant, Axios reported.
Commitment To Original Assistant Remains
“We remain deeply committed to Assistant, and we are optimistic about its bright future ahead,” Ranjan and Dukellis wrote.
The Google executives sign off their email, noting they’re holding a town hall tomorrow, where further details will likely emerge.
“Duke and I will host a town hall tomorrow to go through the org changes in more detail and take your questions,” the email concludes.
Early Thoughts On An AI-Powered Google Assistant
The introduction of generative AI into Google Assistant represents a massive upgrade. It means Assistant can engage in more natural conversations, provide more detailed and nuanced responses, and perform tasks more intelligently.
The new Google Assistant may leverage LaMDA (Language Model for Dialogue Applications), the company’s conversational AI system. LaMDA powers chatbots like Bard to generate human-like exchanges.
Integrating LaMDA’s capabilities will enable Assistant to understand the context better during interactions. It can connect logically between conversation pieces and maintain coherent, thoughtful dialogue.
Interaction with the new version will likely be a giant leap forward for users accustomed to the original Assistant’s limited abilities.
If Google opens APIs and other resources to allow third-party apps and services, developers could integrate the AI-powered Assistant into their products.
There are numerous opportunities to create next-generation voice apps and experiences powered by Google’s AI advancements.
As one of Google’s flagship consumer offerings, bringing state-of-the-art AI to Assistant hints at what’s to come across Google’s portfolio.
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