Google has just announced new AI-based features for its Search Generative Experience (SGE). The SGE feature has been extended to let you use artificial intelligence (AI) to create images or start writing drafts right from the search bar.
If you need a unique image (for example, a capybara in a chef’s hat cooking breakfast), you would type it in, and generative AI will provide you with image options. You can do the same to draft a note to a contractor and easily transfer the draft to Google Docs or Gmail.
SGE was first announced back in May. This included the company’s chatbot integration right into the search on phones as well as computers. At the time, the SGE was meant to provide users with AI-based summaries of search results. However, it was slow to provide the output, leading to complaints from users. Sometimes, it also led to crashes, or the tool provided very long responses instead of summaries, which in most cases provided irrelevant information.
Getting Started With SGE
To use the Search Generative Experience (SGE), you need to have access to Search Labs. However, Search Labs is currently only available to a limited number of people in the U.S., India, and Japan and is available in English, Hindi, and Japanese.
To use on Android, ensure you:
- Have an Android phone.
- Update to the latest Google Search app from Google Play.
- Are 18 or older.
- Use a personal Google Account (not a Workspace account).
- To enable SGE:
On your phone, open the Google app.
- Sign in to your Google Account, with “Incognito mode” off.
- Tap the Labs icon at the top left.
- Find the SGE card, and turn on the experiment.
- Read and agree to the Terms of Service, if okay.
- Click on Try an example.
Just keep in mind that it might take a while for SGE to appear after you turn it on.
Enhancing User Experience with Responsible AI Implementation
Google is stepping further into the world of AI with its new feature, aiming to make everyday tasks easier while keeping safety in check.
In a blog post, it explained that it is putting in measures like:
- Checks against bias: Tools and datasets to help identify and mitigate unfair bias in its machine learning models.
- Red-teaming: In-house and external testing for any vulnerabilities and potential areas of abuse.
- Implementing policies: Strong rules to filter out harmful content. Google has built systems to catch and take down content that breaks these rules.
- Safeguarding teens: Google is limiting SGE outputs on certain topics (such as bullying or illegal substances).
- Indemnifying customers for copyright: It has put protections in place around the data used to train the AI and the creations produced for users of key Google Workspace and Google Cloud services. In simpler terms: if there are any copyright issues, Google will take on the legal risks involved.
Google is also adding tools to help users understand the information given by their AI models better – such as features like “About this result” for SGE. This is especially important for images, which will have tags and watermarks under a system called SynthID.
When it comes to privacy, Google is ensuring its AI products are private from the get-go. The privacy protections that Google account users already enjoy will cover these new AI tools too.
Tech Giants’ Competitive Sprint in AI Technology
Google’s expansion of SGE shows its effort to catch up in the field of AI, especially since its chatbot Bard hasn’t been doing as well as similar tools from OpenAI and Microsoft.
When OpenAI released ChatGPT in November 2022, it quickly became very popular. It amazed users with its ability to process information, solve problems, and respond to questions in a way that felt almost human. It gathered a user base of 100 million in no time, showing how well it was received.
The success of ChatGPT got big tech companies racing to create similar AI tools. Microsoft invested a whopping $10 billion in OpenAI and other tech projects to boost its AI game. Its search engine Bing has also been a part of Microsoft’s efforts to enhance user experience through AI.