Artificial intelligence firm OpenAI has announced a significant update to ChatGPT, allowing it to browse the internet and incorporate up-to-date information into its responses. This capability, previously limited to data up to September 2021, is now available to Plus and Enterprise subscribers using the GPT-4 model. OpenAI plans to roll out the web browsing feature to other users in the near future, though it hasn’t specified whether this will apply to non-premium users or if it will extend to the GPT 3.5 model.
This update addresses a key limitation of ChatGPT, which previously relied on a knowledge base ending in 2021 due to the nature of its training as a generative pre-trained transformer (GPT). The new browsing capability allows ChatGPT to provide users with current and authoritative information, complete with direct links to sources.
OpenAI’s efforts to implement browsing with ChatGPT have seen both successes and challenges. Reports in June 2023 indicated that beta versions of ChatGPT with browsing were used to bypass paywalls, but the technology also exhibited occasional issues such as hallucinations and confusion between recent and historical information.
Notably, this browsing feature update follows closely on the heels of OpenAI’s announcement that ChatGPT was receiving a multimodal update. This update enables ChatGPT, including GPT-3.5 and GPT-4, to understand spoken queries in plain language, respond using one of five different voices, and interpret images.
OpenAI has been unveiling a series of updates to its products, leaving anticipation for further announcements at its inaugural developer’s conference, OpenAI DevDay, scheduled for November 6th in San Francisco.