How will the emergence of AI chatbots like ChatGPT impact businesses?

Sophie Grosvenor April 17th 2023 - 3 minute read

‘What we are all seeing is the emergence of this extremely powerful technology. This is an inflection point. All of history shows that these kinds of powerful new technologies can and will be used for good and for ill.’

Arati Prabhakar, director of the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy, recently spoke on the exciting possibilities of AI, but also of the dangers. OpenAI have unveiled the fourth and latest iteration of GPT (Generative Pretrained Transformer), their revolutionary artificial intelligence chatbot model.

Backed by Microsoft, and set to rival Google’s own chatbot Bard, the latest version is said to take human-like technology to the next level. ChatGPT will be able to use both text and image prompts to generate content.

According to OpenAI, the new technology is a significant upgrade to GPT3.5. When tested on the bar exam for law school graduates, the new model scored within the top 10% of test takers, compared to the prior version which finished within the bottom 10%.

However, as with any conversation around AI, we look at the good, the bad, and the ugly side of AI chatbots and their impact on businesses.

The Pros

Customer Service

One of the most crucial parts of any business is customer service, an area where some companies can struggle due to limited time and resources. This is where AI chatbots could bridge the gap at a fraction of the cost.

At present, chatbots are quite limited in their range of responses, as well as meeting the specific and personal needs of the customer. And the moment a customer doesn’t feel heard or understood, you could lose them.

But with GPT-4, the technology can be trained on the specifics of your own company, and the needs of the customer. Commenting on the capabilities of the new iteration of its chatbot, OpenAI said:

‘The difference comes out when the complexity of the task reaches a sufficient threshold. GPT-4 is more reliable, creative, and able to handle much more nuanced instructions.’

Expanding your global reach

At present, translation services cost both time and money, and even then, the nuances of region-specific copy could be lost in translation. With the implementation of ChatGPT, translations could be generated quickly and require minimal editing, speeding up the process. With the efficiency vastly improved, the attributed cost will also be greatly reduced.

The advanced ChatGPT-4 language model can apply translations in various languages and expand your business’ reach globally with a fraction of the cost it would normally require. One of the biggest challenges for any company is reaching a wider audience, but the subsequent breakdown of language barriers could achieve that goal in record time with AI.

The Cons

Disinformation Bots

The plague of bots and fake users on social media have long been a problem on the likes of Twitter spreading misinformation. With thousands of users believing such widely-spread bogus news or information, the rise of AI-powered fake users could exponentially intensify the problem.

At present, the teems of bots used to spread lies or propaganda are basic and unable to perpetuate misinformation beyond simply sharing it. However, the advancement of chatbots could turn the hordes of fake users into seemingly intelligent, argument-holding, and persuasive bots.

To make matters worse, the disinformation can also be unintentional. Users have reported ChatGPT presenting something as fact, while relaying incorrect information.

Rise in cyber crime

Another dark side of AI chatbots often overlooked is the rise of artificial intelligence-led scams. Email scams already rank amongst the most common form of cyber-attacks, the advent and rise of chatbots will only exacerbate the problem. Cybersecurity firm Darktrace has warned that since the release of ChatGPT, there has been a significant rise in sophisticated attacks using artificial intelligence.

A surge in email attacks from criminals using ChatGPT has seen a rise in employees being scammed and businesses hacked. The powerful AI capability is making it increasingly difficult to identify security threats. An expected rise in more sophisticated social engineering scams could significantly alter the cyber-attack landscape.

Need for Human Intervention

At present, AI chatbots are not a fool-proof replacement for human interaction. Especially with customer service, there will be situations where the ChatGPT misunderstands a query, and human intervention will be necessary. Businesses should have contingency plans in place for when such situations arise, ensuring quality customer service remains a top priority.

ChatGPT has the capability to transform businesses, from improving customer service, saving time, to greatly reducing costs. However, whilst the benefits of ChatGPT and other AI chatbots are plentiful, there are drawbacks that companies should be aware of. The lack of emotional intelligence, creativity, and understanding could present huge roadblocks in delivering quality service to your customers.

Written by
Sophie Grosvenor

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