Big Tech, AI, OpenAI, Google: from cat to parrot

Written 8 Dec. 2022 at 19:44

Will ChatGPT replace Google? OpenAI’s chatbot is good too polite to answer openly to the question that hardly touches the investors. However, the incredible buzz created by the artificial intelligence, which gained more than a million users in a week – unheard of – is probably not for nothing in the five consecutive sessions of decline on Wall Street in the world’s No. 1 Internet research. Its parent company, Alphabet, is actually the only one among “GAFAM” – ie. Apple, Meta (Facebook), Amazon and Microsoft – experiencing such misfortune on the stock market (-7.1%).

Sam Altman’s chatbot pays tribute to the “complex algorithms” of its big rival. But he precisely faults the excessive simplicity of the Mountain View giant’s business model. Advertising should fall below the 80% threshold of its revenue this year, a too-slow diversification that exposes it to a tech rocker similar to the one that saw BlackBerry falter against the iPhone. The search engine accounts for more than half of advertising revenue.

ChatGPT may just be an unreliable and omniscient “stochastic parrot”, while Alphabet is not the last in this “AI” race. But its valuation (18 times the results of 2023), beaten only by Meta (10 times), clearly does not make it the winner of the battle.

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