We talk about it (very) regularly: the race for AI is frantic. Big tech companies are flocking to ads to showcase their tools. This time it’s Google’s turn to inform us about the availability of tools for businesses and developers through Google Workspace. Thus, Gmail and Google Docs will notably benefit from the automatic generation of text.
In its announcement blog post, Google does not cut corners:We are currently at a pivotal moment in our AI journey. Breakthroughs in generative AI are dramatically changing the way people interact with technology.This is certainly enough to promote the power of his presentation, but it testifies to an important trend. Gmail and Google Docs will take advantage of Google’s language model: a kind of ChatGPT to write your emails and other texts, and this, from now on for Workspace users.
Google is also in the race for generative AI
While OpenAI announced on March 14 GPT-4, a new major version of its language model and Bing had been using it for several weeks, announcements in terms of generative AI are raining. In this race, Google is in the game, but for the moment is in retreat. If the company presented Bard, its own language model, it is currently not available. In reality, we are expecting the biggest announcements from Google at its annual conference, the Google I/O which will take place on May 10.
On the other hand, by integrating generative AI into its office suite, Google is directly competing with Microsoft, which is also preparing a new conference dedicated to this theme. We know that the Redmond firm is actively working on the integration of similar functions for its Office suite. Word would allow you to write text and Outlook to respond quickly to your emails, like what Google Docs and Gmail will be able to do today.
In parallel with its presentation, the web giant specifies that other experiments will be launched this month with certain testers, for the moment in English and in the United States. If they prove conclusive, they will of course be extended to other countries and other languages.
Gmail and Google Docs and other Google apps are getting really smart
Until now, we find in Gmail and in Google Docs the Smart Compose or Smart Reply functions, which make it possible to write automatically according to a context: a response to an email, the continuation of a sentence, etc. However, their capabilities are most often limited to a few terms, not whole sentences. Google Workspace announces this March 14 a set of AI writing functions. They are available now for Workspace users.
To facilitate the handling of these new tools, Google has imagined the uses that can be made of its AI. For example, you can “write, respond, summarize and prioritizehis emails in his client. Google Docs now allows you to “reflect, reread, write and rewrite“: in other words, this will help some of the laziest students.
In fact, when we want to write on a subject, it will be enough to type this subject to have a draft which is generated. Draft that can be edited to refine your writing. Beyond that, it’s even the style and that can be modified: enough to formalize an email that is not professional enough. The AI tool also makes it possible to lengthen or shorten a text, or to put it in the form of a list
From a more technical point of view, in Google Sheets, Workspace users will be able to pass “from raw data to insights and analysis through auto-completion, formula generation and contextual categorization“. On the communication side, they will be able to generate backgrounds and save notes in Meet, or even “enable workflowsin Chat. Finally, and you can easily miss this if you read quickly, but Slides, the Google equivalent of PowerPoint, will automatically generate images, sound and even videos.
Google tries to reassure users
In view of the controversies with LaMDA, its language model which would be endowed with sensitivity according to one of its former collaborators, an unreliable Google Bard, problems caused by the conversational Bing or even with Snapchat’s My AI, Google is trying to to reassure. In its article, the web giant says it pays great attention to its AI with “thoughtful experimentation and many iterations based on user feedback.“He goes on to add to do all of this”implementing safeguards against abuse, protecting the privacy of user data, and adhering to customer controls over data governance.»
Also from a concrete point of view, Google assumes that its AI can be wrong and says it wants to give control to the user “by letting the AI make suggestions that you are able to accept, edit and modify.Furthermore, as all these functions are currently reserved for Workspace subscribers, who are most of the time companies, Google provides “corresponding administrative controls so that IT departments can set the right policies for their organization.»
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