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Meta’s AI chatbot debuts on WhatsApp

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American tech giant Meta Platforms has now brought cutting-edge AI technology to its popular instant messaging platform WhatsApp. According to WABetaInfo, a website known for tracking WhatsApp updates, users can now access the chatbot directly from the ‘Chats’ section, conveniently positioned above the ‘New Chat’ button.

Initially rolled out to a select number of users in the United States, the latest WhatsApp beta version for Android features a user-friendly shortcut to this innovative AI chatbot. Currently, it is still unclear as to when the chatbot will be available to everyone.

The AI chatbot, which was previously unveiled during Meta Connect 2023 in September, is powered by a combination of Meta’s latest large language model research and the potent Llama 2 model. This formidable blend enables the chatbot to perform a variety of tasks, including providing witty responses, aiding in trip planning, offering recommendations, and settling debates in group chats. It serves as a comprehensive assistant, akin to popular AI models like ChatGPT, Bard, or Bing, equipped to handle an array of user inquiries and needs.

In a strategic partnership with Microsoft’s Bing Chat, Meta has enhanced the chatbot’s capabilities, allowing it to deliver real-time web results. This collaboration brings a level of dynamism and currentness to the chatbot’s responses, setting it apart from conventional AI assistants. Furthermore, echoing the functionalities of text-to-image generators such as MidJourney and Bing Image Creator, the chatbot can generate realistic images from scratch using a simple ‘/imagine’ command, offered free of charge.

In addition to the AI chatbot, WhatsApp is experimenting with a new feature to streamline the viewing of status updates. The latest Android beta version, as per WABetaInfo, includes an option to filter and view status updates in a vertical list. This feature enhances the user experience, particularly for those who do not follow any channels, by simplifying access to muted status updates without navigating through the app’s menu.

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