Google suffers $100 billion loss after Bard AI chatbot gave wrong answer

Google owner Alphabet has fallen the most in more than three months over concerns that its new artificial intelligence chatbot, Bard, could provide inaccurate answers.

Alphabet’s Feb. 6 presentation of Bard was “underwhelming,” Bloomberg Intelligence technology analyst Mandeep Singh said in a note. In one case, Bard was asked about new discoveries made by the James Webb Space Telescope. In one of his responses, Bard said the telescope was used to take the first images of a planet outside of Earth’s solar system, while NASA says these were actually taken by a different telescope.

The wrong answer has raised questions about the accuracy of the chatbot.

The wrong answer has raised questions about the accuracy of the chatbot.Credit:Getty Images

Alphabet’s shares are down 7.6 percent in late Wall Street trade, on track for their biggest drop since Oct. 26. The decline wiped more than $100 billion ($140 billion) from Alphabet’s market value.

Google said in a statement that Bard’s response “highlights the importance of a rigorous testing process.” The company said it will combine external feedback with its own internal testing to ensure Bard’s responses “meet a high bar for quality, certainty and realism in real-world information.”

The test comes as the battle to build the most accurate and effective search engine escalates. On Monday, Google introduced Bard, whose underlying technology will eventually be integrated into The next day, Microsoft said it would integrate a cousin of ChatGPT into Bing, using AI that can aggregate web pages, synthesize disparate sources, even compose emails and translate them into the hands of more consumers.

On Wednesday, Google held a press conference in Paris that shared more details about the company’s progress in integrating artificial intelligence into search.


“The general consensus is that ChatGPT and the Microsoft Bing announcement created a narrative that the Google search business model is in jeopardy,” said Mark Riedl, a professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology.

The frenzy has also spread to overseas markets, with China’s Baidu announcing it would complete internal testing of a ChatGPT-style project called “Ernie Bot” in March, and a number of Chinese companies linked to artificial intelligence have seen their stocks skyrocket. Google suffers $100 billion loss after Bard AI chatbot gave wrong answer

Brian Lowry

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