Baidu, a Chinese search engine company, has sued “relevant” app developers and Apple Inc. (AAPL.O) for selling fake copies of its Ernie bot app on Apple’s app store.

The company’s Ernie bot, which uses artificial intelligence and came out last month, has been called China’s closest answer to the chatbot ChatGPT, which was made in the United States.

Baidu said that it had filed lawsuits in Beijing Haidian People’s Court against the developers who made fake Ernie bot apps and the Apple company.

fake Ernie bot apps: Baidu sues Apple, app developers over fake Ernie bot apps - The Economic Times

“Right now, Ernie doesn’t have an official app,” Baidu said in a statement posted on the official “Baidu AI” WeChat account late on Friday night.

It also posted a picture of the paperwork it sent to the court.

“Until our company makes an official announcement, any Ernie apps you see in the App Store or other stores are fake,” it said.

Apple didn’t answer right away when asked for a comment.

A search by Reuters on Saturday showed that there were still at least four fake apps in the Apple App Store with the Chinese name of the Ernie bot.

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