Microsoft-owned OpenAI has announced that its AI chatbot ChatGPT can once more browse the web for current information, providing answers taken directly from "current and authoritative" sources, which it cites in its responses.
The company rolled out the feature called 'Browse with Bing" which is only open to those with Plus and Enterprise subscriptions for now, but it will roll out "to all users soon".
"ChatGPT can now browse the internet to provide you with current and authoritative information, complete with direct links to sources. It is no longer limited to data before September 2021," OpenAI wrote on X on Wednesday.
"Browsing is available to Plus and Enterprise users today, and we'll expand to all users soon. To enable, choose Browse with Bing in the selector under GPT-4," it added.
Microsoft's Bing Chat on Windows, the Edge browser, and third-party browser plugins are already capable of returning live information from the web, and Google's Bard in Chrome can do the same.
Additionally, both offer links when searching, just as ChatGPT offers Browse with Bing. Additionally, OpenAI recently unveiled a significant update that enables ChatGPT to engage in voice conversations with users and utilize images, bringing it closer in functionality to popular AI assistants such as Apple's Siri.
Previously, OpenAI had experimented with integrating Bing search engine access into the premium ChatGPT Plus offering, but this feature was later disabled due to concerns that it might enable users to circumvent paywalls.
ChatGPT experienced unprecedented growth earlier this year, becoming the fastest-growing consumer application in history, with 100 million monthly active users in January. However, it was eventually overtaken by Meta's Threads app.
This rapid rise in popularity has sparked increased investor interest in OpenAI, with reports, including one from Reuters, suggesting that the startup is in discussions with shareholders about selling existing shares at a significantly higher valuation compared to a few months ago.
In June, OpenAI added the capability to browse the internet within its ChatGPT iOS app but soon pulled it out after people realised they could coax the chatbot to reveal otherwise paywalled content by feeding a URL directly to it.
(With inputs from IANS)