Chinese tech firms Baidu and SenseTime have launched their own AI bots, marking a significant milestone in the global AI race. Baidu has made its ERNIE Bot accessible to the public, enabling users to perform AI-powered searches and various tasks like video creation and document summarization. This news has led to a 3.1% increase in Baidu's shares in New York and a 4.7% increase in Hong Kong. Baidu is one of the first companies in China to receive regulatory approval for this type of service and the first to launch it publicly.
Previously, the ERNIE Bot, also known as "Wenxin Yiyan" in Chinese, was only available to corporate clients or select members of the public through a waitlist. In addition, SenseTime, an AI startup based in Hong Kong, has also announced the public launch of its SenseChat platform. Following this news, SenseTime's shares surged by 4% in Hong Kong. A spokesperson from SenseTime stated, "We are pleased to announce that starting today, it is fully available to serve all users."
In July, China implemented new regulations on generative AI, making it one of the first countries to regulate the industry. Baidu has been at the forefront of capitalizing on generative artificial intelligence, particularly with its ChatGPT-style technology. Baidu's ERNIE Bot has impressed users with its ability to simplify coding, create websites from sketches, and achieve high marks in exams. Other Chinese companies like Alibaba and SenseTime have also announced their plans to launch similar AI tools.
Some critics believe that these new offerings from Chinese firms will contribute to the existing US-China rivalry in emerging technologies. However, Baidu CEO Robin Li has emphasized that the company's platform is not intended for confrontation between China and the United States. Baidu's service, which will be integrated into its popular search engine, sets itself apart with its advanced understanding of Chinese queries and its ability to generate various types of responses, including text, images, audio, and video.
While ERNIE Bot is available worldwide, its interface is in Chinese. However, users can enter both Chinese and English prompts. SenseTime, on the other hand, has highlighted features that allow users to write or debug code more efficiently and receive personalized medical advice from a virtual health consultation assistant.