OpenAI, the parent company of the viral AI-powered chatbot, ChatGPT, which can write essays, emails, and even computer code using natural language, is looking to launch a premium paid version called ChatGPT Professional.
The AI chatbot was released in November 2022 as a free service. However, reports suggest that OpenAI is already considering different ways to monetize ChatGPT services.
Techcrunch reports that the company announced that a paid version of the AI chatbot would soon be launched. Open AI announced on its Discord server that the paid version will be called ChatGPT Professional.
For individuals interested, OpenAI has created a google form that serves as a waiting link for the service. It is an experimental program, and according to OpenAI, they do not plan to make paid pro access generally available yet.
How does the waitlist work?
The waitlist form, geared towards professional use, already outlines benefits users can access with the premium version. This includes no blackout (unavailability), no throttling, and unlimited messages.
Also, OpenAI says that after filling out the waitlist form, those selected will be made to pilot ChatGPT Professional and set up a payment process. In the Google form, there are a few questions about how much users are willing to pay for the ChatGPT Professional.
For example, one of the questions is, “At what price (per month) would you consider ChatGPT to be so expensive that you would not consider buying it?’ Another is, At what price (per month) would you consider ChatGPT a bargain—an excellent buy for the money?
OpenAI’s financial build-up
While OpenAI launched as a non-profit organization in 2015, its goal has been to “ensure that artificial general intelligence (AGI)— that outperforms humans at most economically valuable work—benefits all of humanity”.
In March 2019, the AI company announced that it is creating OpenAI LP, a new “capped-profit” company to allow them to increase its investments in computing and talent while including checks and balances and actualizing its mission.
A few months after, Mircosoft entered a partnership with OpenAI investing around $1 billion into the company. Microsoft is also reportedly considering making a considerable investment of $10 billion in OpenAI, the parent company of ChatGPT, which will grow OpenAI’s value to $29 billion.
The ChatGPT service has had over 1 million users since its interception. However, it is unsure if it is sufficient to run as a free service forever. On December 5th, a Twitter user asked Sama Altman, the CEO, if it would be free forever, and he responded that the computing cost is eye-watching.
According to an analysis conducted by Indian Express, OpenAI spends at least $100K per day or $3 million per month on running costs, which is steep considering the growing number of users of the AI chatbot.
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