Google Assistant to Undergo AI Upgrade and Overhaul

Google has revealed plans to revamp its Assistant by employing generative AI technologies akin to those that drive OpenAI’s ChatGPT and the company’s own Bard chatbot (that’s not available in Canada of course).

The transformative plan was leaked in an internal email dispatched to the company’s employees on Monday, and later obtained by Axios.

The imminent overhaul of Google Assistant is set to drastically modify its operation for a broad spectrum of users, including consumers, developers, and the tech giant’s own workforce. As per the email, Google will continue supporting both the existing and new approaches during this transition.

The preliminary work on the improved Assistant has already commenced, with the mobile version serving as the launch pad for the comprehensive upgrade. Amidst this development, Google is reorganizing the teams that have been working on the Assistant.

As part of the transition, Google has indicated that it will be laying off a small number of employees. The restructuring could potentially lead to the elimination of dozens of positions out of the thousands currently working on the Assistant, according to Axios.

Google’s Vice President, Peeyush Ranjan, and Director of Product, Duke Dukellis, reinforced the company’s commitment to the Assistant in the email. “We remain deeply committed to Assistant and we are optimistic about its bright future ahead,” the duo wrote.

This move by Google isn’t isolated; other tech giants are following suit. Amazon, for instance, is reportedly working on an AI-empowered reboot for its digital assistant, Alexa. Both Google and Amazon initiated a rollback on their traditional digital assistant work last year.

The full text of the email disclosed details of the team changes and reinforced Google’s vision for the Assistant, emphasizing the potential of generative AI in reshaping user experiences. The company pledged full support to the employees impacted by the layoffs and assured an internal search period of a minimum of 60 days to help them transition smoothly.

Peeyush and Duke are set to host a town hall meeting to delve deeper into the organizational changes, reiterating the company’s commitment to the Assistant and its “optimistic” outlook on its “bright future” (minus layoffs of course).

It’s no surprise that a revamped version of Google Assistant would be taking place, especially now that the AI chatbot Bard is widely available for testing. Google Assistant is far smarter than Siri and an AI-powered version leveraging Bard would easily blow Apple’s disgraceful voice assistant out of the water.

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