Meta Begins Trials for Its AI Chatbot on WhatsApp, Instagram, and Messenger

Meta, the parent company of social media platform Facebook, has commenced trials for its Meta AI chatbot in India and select regions of Africa, spanning across WhatsApp, Instagram, and Messenger. This strategic move underscores Meta’s ambition to leverage its extensive user base across its apps to expand its AI services. The company had unveiled its plans to experiment with chatbots and AI tools in February 2023. India, with over 500 million Facebook and WhatsApp users, stands out as a key market for Meta.

According sources, Meta is testing its AI as it tries to be the best in artificial intelligence against tech behemoths like Google and Microsoft, as well as newer ones like OpenAI

Meta confirmed the move in a statement. “Our generative AI-powered experiences are under development in varying phases, and we’re testing a range of them publicly in a limited capacity,” a Meta spokesperson

With smartphone users growing faster in developing markets like India and Africa compared to developed markets, Meta sees these regions as pivotal for piloting new services. Meta’s AI chatbot, Meta AI, was introduced in September 2023 and is designed to assist users within chats and generate images from text prompts. Despite entering the AI landscape relatively later, Meta is forging ahead with its AI strategy for several reasons.

Firstly, there’s a pressing need for user retention as people increasingly expect and desire AI tools within their apps. Failure to provide them could result in users migrating to competitors. Secondly, investor satisfaction is paramount, as stakeholders not only seek robust earnings but also anticipate Meta’s commitment to shaping the future of computing. Lastly, there’s a matter of pride. With a history of setting the pace in areas like mobile apps, social media, and advertising, Meta boasts significant talent, including renowned AI academic Yann LeCun. Missing out on AI advancements would contradict this legacy.

Integrating Meta AI into WhatsApp and Instagram, which collectively boast billions of monthly active users, presents a significant opportunity for Meta to scale its AI offerings. Additionally, the company has announced the upcoming launch of Llama 3, the next version of its open-source large language model.”

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