OpenAI announced today that it will support new third-party plugins for ChatGPT. This has already started a buzz on Twitter about the company’s possible move to a platform.
In a blog post, the company said that the plugins are “tools designed specifically for language models with safety as a core principle. They help ChatGPT access up-to-date information, run computations, or use third-party services.”
A Sign of OpenAI’s Accelerating Dominance
we are starting our rollout of ChatGPT plugins.
— Sam Altman (@sama) March 23, 2023
The public quickly took the news as a sign that OpenAI wanted to become even more dominant by making ChatGPT a platform for developers.
“OpenAI sees ChatGPT as a platform play,” Marco Mascorro, who helped start Fellow AI, wrote on Twitter.
And @gregmushen tweeted, “I think the addition of plugins to ChatGPT is a threat to the App Store. It makes a new platform with different ways to make money.
Sam Altman, the CEO of OpenAI, tweeted about the news: “We are starting to roll out ChatGPT plugins. You can add plugins to help with many different tasks. We can’t wait to see what the developers come up with!”
He said that OpenAI has a plugin for browsing the web and a plugin for running code. He also said that the company is giving away the code for a plugin for retrieval.
He said that the plugins are still “very experimental,” but that “we think there’s something great in this direction; it’s a feature that’s been asked for a lot.”
ChatGPT plugins: Major Milestone in the Development of AI Chat
OpenAI said that plugin developers who have been taken off the company’s waitlist can use its documentation to build a plugin for ChatGPT. The first plugins have already been created by companies including Expedia, Instacart, Kayak, OpenTable and Zapier.
Expedia says that their new plugin makes it easier for ChatGPT users to plan trips. A press representative said in an email, “Until now, ChatGPT could tell travellers what to do and where to stay, but it couldn’t help them shop or book.”
Now, once a traveller turns on the Expedia plugin, they can “bring to life” a trip itinerary they made with ChatGPT by adding information from Expedia’s travel data, such as the availability and prices of flights, hotels, vacation rentals, activities, and car rentals in real time. When they’re ready to book, they’ll be sent to Expedia, where they can log in to see options based on what they like, as well as member discounts, loyalty rewards, and more.
The update is a big step forward for AI chat as a way to connect to the internet and talk to other people online. ChatGPT doesn’t just offer a service; it also makes an environment where developers can make and share their own plugins to help users.
This is like how Apple’s App Store changed the mobile market by letting third-party apps grow on its devices. The plugin feature of ChatGPT could give AI chat new ways to be used and new markets to sell to in the future.
OpenAI said that they would start giving users and developers on their waitlist access to the alpha version of their plugins. They plan to give more people access “over time.”