Amazon releases AI chatbot called 'Q'

Agence France-Presse
Amazon releases AI chatbot called 'Q'
Amazon Web Services (AWS) CEO Adam Selipsky delivers a keynote address during AWS re:Invent 2023, a conference hosted by Amazon Web Services, at The Venetian Las Vegas on November 28, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Noah Berger/Getty Images for Amazon Web Services/AFP

WASHINGTON, United States — Amazon on Tuesday released its own AI chatbot intended for businesses, about one year after ChatGPT took the world by storm.

"Q" will be available only to Amazon's AWS cloud computing customers and will be in direct competition with OpenAI's ChatGPT as well as Google's Bard and Microsoft's copilots that also run on OpenAI's technology.

Chatbots targeted at businesses have become the main battleground for generative AI, a year after ChatGPT wowed the world with its ability to churn out expert and human-like content instantaneously.

Costing $20 monthly per user, Amazon Q will perform a variety of tasks including summarizing uploaded documents and answering questions about specific data sitting on a company’s servers.

Amazon CEO Andy Jassy plugged Amazon Q as a more secure version of an AI chatbot in which access to content will be more closely controlled. 

This was designed to reassure companies that have been put off by the technology's tendency to churn out incorrect or inappropriate answers, sometimes called hallucinations.

"If a user doesn’t have permission to access certain data without Amazon Q, they can’t access it using Amazon Q either," Jassy said in a post on X.

AWS CEO Andrew Selipsky insisted that cloud customers using Q could also limit their chatbots to a very limited and predetermined source of data.

While presenting the company’s latest AI developments, Selipsky also took a veiled swipe at Microsoft.

For AI tasks, Microsoft, AWS's biggest rival, depends on OpenAI, the company that suffered an embarrassing boardroom dustup this month that saw CEO Sam Altman fired and rehired five days later.

Selipsky said the tumult showed that businesses needed to depend on a variety of AI providers.

"You need a real choice . . . The events of the past 10 days have made that very clear," Selipsky said at the event in Las Vegas.

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