OpenAI CEO Sam Altman more or less confirms work on AI search engine


OpenAI CEO Sam Altman finds the idea of combining ChatGPT with search capabilities to reinvent Internet search exciting. But he has no intention of creating another Google.

In an interview with podcaster Lex Fridman, Altman indirectly described the way Google currently presents search results as outdated. He said he is not interested in copying Google’s model, but rather wants to reinvent search.

“The thing that’s exciting to me is not that we can go build a better copy of Google search, but that maybe there’s just some much better way to help people find and act on and synthesize information,” Altman said.

ChatGPT is already an example of some use cases for an alternative, and OpenAI hopes to expand that to many more use cases. It’s about helping the user get the answer or information they want, generating it in some cases, summarizing it in others, or referencing it in still others, Altman said.



Building a better search service than Google is a huge challenge, both technically and in terms of branding and ecosystem. “I don’t think the world needs another copy of Google,” Altman said.

Asked what would be cooler than the standard Google clone, Altman said he’s interested in combining language models with Internet search capabilities, and OpenAI is interested in how to do that well.

“That would be an example of a cool thing,” Altman said. “The intersection of LLMs plus search, I don’t think anyone has cracked the code on yet. I would love to go do that. I think that would be cool.”

Altman thinks you can do AI search without ads

Altman is interested in doing just that. He also believes that OpenAI does not need to rely on advertising for aesthetic reasons. Advertising has been necessary on the Internet for various reasons to get it off the ground, but it is a temporary phenomenon, Altman believes.

He likes the fact that users pay for ChatGPT and know that the answers are not influenced by advertisers. It’s easy to imagine a dystopian future where ChatGPT tells you to buy this or that product or go on vacation there, Altman says.


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