The widespread success of OpenAI’s ChatGPT has sparked a debate about the potential for search engines like Google to survive. Paul Buchheit, the creator of Gmail and vocal opponent of traditional search engine models, believes that these companies have up to two years before they become obsolete — an opinion he expressed in a recent tweet.
Since its launch in November, ChatGPT has quickly become the premier spot for millions of users to ask their questions. Rather than offering a response that can span numerous web pages, ChatGPT offers answers through an interactive dialogue format — making it simpler for customers to pose follow-up queries as well.
Is this the end of Google’s search engine? Could ChatGPT potentially be the demise of this iconic platform, just as it had been for Yellow Pages years ago? Interesting Engineering previously reported that when ChatGPT became an overnight sensation, it sent top-level executives at Google into a flurry. Now they are pivoting towards their AI-based products instead.
Is Google Nearing Its End?
With the majority of its revenue stemming from a single product, the search engine, Google could soon be facing an impending crisis. Paul Buchheit’s tweet served as a warning that Artificial Intelligence has the potential to replace search engine result pages.
Capitalizing on its popularity and success, Google charges advertisers a fee for the privilege of displaying their offerings adjacent to relevant search results. In 2021, the tech giant earned revenue that exceeded $250 billion — the highest it has ever made since its inception nearly 25 years ago.
Nevertheless, with the introduction of ChatGPT, Google could soon be ousted as a top search engine preference among users who are eager for rapid responses compared to indexed pages. Even if Google was able to rush its proprietary AI products into circulation right away, Buchheit does not recognize how it would do so without destroying its most lucrative asset in the process.
What does ChatGPT Think?
ChatGPT is on a tear, becoming popular for generating poetry and code as well as passing rigorous MBA tests at the prestigious Wharton School of Business. This has been enough to draw Microsoft’s attention and additional financial investment with plans to incorporate ChatGPT into its very own search engine in order to dethrone Google from the top spot.
Even though Microsoft is likely elated to witness Google’s prolonged reign of search dominance coming to an end, ChatGPT does not think its own services will be the catalyst for this change.
In just a few short years, we will discover whether OpenAI is accurately assessing its abilities and if Google can continue to collaborate with ChatGPT and other A.I. technologies in harmony.