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ChatGPT could power voice assistants in General Motors vehicles


The automaker is reportedly using Microsoft’s Azure cloud service and OpenAI’s tech to develop a new virtual vehicle assistant.

a:hover]:text-gray-63 [&>a:hover]:shadow-underline-black dark:[&>a:hover]:text-gray-bd dark:[&>a:hover]:shadow-underline-gray [&>a]:shadow-underline-gray-63 dark:[&>a]:text-gray-bd dark:[&>a]:shadow-underline-gray”>Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

The AI language models behind OpenAI’s ChatGPT could soon be powering virtual assistants in General Motors vehicles. As reported by Reuters on Friday, an executive for GM has revealed that the American automaker is exploring potential uses for ChatGPT as part of a broader collaboration with Microsoft. Semafor similarly reported last week that “people with knowledge of the product” had specified GM was using Microsoft’s Azure cloud service — which includes a ChatGPT API — to develop a virtual personal assistant for its vehicles. 

GM Vice President Scott Miller provided some details for the project in an interview with Reuters last week, saying that “ChatGPT is going to be in everything.” Miller claimed that the chatbot could push things beyond voice commands currently used in vehicles by providing drivers with information about their vehicle’s features, such as advising the driver on what action to take when a diagnostic light appears on the dashboard or instructing the user on how to change a flat tire by displaying a video demonstration on the vehicle’s infotainment system.

Ford’s as-yet-unnamed assistant could also program functions like garage door codes, or integrating user schedules from a calendar to remind the driver of any upcoming meetings and tasks. According to Semafor, GM’s voice assistant won’t necessarily behave like ChatGPT or Bing Chat as the company plans to apply a “car-specific layer” to OpenAI’s tech.

“This shift is not just about one single capability like the evolution of voice commands, but instead means that customers can expect their future vehicles to be far more capable and fresh overall when it comes to emerging technologies,” a GM spokesperson told Reuters on Friday.

Microsoft already has a “long-term strategic relationship” with General Motors, having partnered with the automaker’s self-driving subsidiary Cruise in 2021 to use Microsoft’s Azure platform to develop GM’s autonomous vehicles. There’s no release timeline or even a formal announcement for General Motor’s ChatGPT integration plans as yet, and with details being so slim, it could be a while before we’re recreating scenes from Knight Rider in a new Chevrolet.

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