Snapchat+ subscription surpasses 3 million as AI chatbot goes free

Snapchat's AI chatbot, powered by OpenAI's GPT technology, is now free to a global audience with new upgraded features.
Kavita Verma
Representational image
Representational image


Snapchat has made an announcement that their AI chatbot, which was initially exclusive to paid subscribers, is now globally available for free. As soon as the AI chatbot was free, Snapchat+ subscription surpassed three million users.

This feature enables users to chat with an AI chatbot, which is powered by OpenAI's GPT technology and can be accessed directly through the app. This feature has been widely popular among users, with almost two million messages sent daily. Earlier, the feature was exclusively available for subscribers of Snapchat+ for $3.99 per month.

The company is also rolling out new features that include adding "My AI" to group chats, sharing Snaps with My AI, and receiving chat replies. Furthermore, My AI will soon have the ability to respond with unique "generative" Snaps to maintain visual conversations rather than just chat replies.

Safety concerns with Snapchat’s AI Chatbot

After its launch, Snapchat's AI chatbot raised safety concerns. According to The Washington Post, it was responding inappropriately by providing suggestions for masking the smell of alcohol and pot at a birthday party and writing an essay for a 15-year-old user.

To tackle these problems, the company introduced new tools like age filters to ensure that the AI responses were suitable for a particular age group. Although the global launch has occurred, the promised Family Center parental controls hub, which would allow parents and guardians to monitor their children's interactions with the bot, has yet to be introduced by Snap.

Personalization features and new upgrades

Snapchat is enhancing its AI chatbot to appeal to a younger audience by allowing it to join group chats, and recommend places on Snap Map, and Snap Lenses. Moreover, users can now respond to their Snaps with a text message, and in the future, generative responses will be available. However, visual responses will be exclusive to Snapchat+ subscribers.

At the Snap Partner Summit, Evan Spiegel, the CEO of Snap, proposed that users could take a picture of their dog and get a humorous dog image in return using generative technology. Alternatively, if someone snaps a photo of their garden vegetables, they could receive recommendations for recipes.

Initially, only those who subscribed to Snapchat+ for $3.99 per month could access the feature, which possibly influenced people to upgrade their subscriptions. Nevertheless, the AI chatbot will now be accessible to all Snapchat users, but certain AI features will only be available through paid upgrades. Other personalization features will enable users to customize My AI by naming it and creating a unique Bitmoji.

Even with the added features, apprehensions about the safety protocols associated with the generative features of the AI chatbot persist. Previous instances of other generative AI applications, like Lensa AI, producing NSFW images have further fueled these concerns, casting doubt on the safety of Snapchat's AI chatbot. However, despite these reservations, Snap still holds a positive outlook regarding the new features and their potential impact on its user base.

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