SenseTime Soars on Speculation; It Will Create AI Rival to ChatGPT
SenseTime Group Inc. rose its most in two months after speculation spread among investors that China’s most valuable specialist AI company was preparing to launch a challenger to artificial intelligence phenomenon ChatGPT.
SenseTime Group Inc. rose its most in two months after speculation spread among investors that China's most valuable specialist AI company was preparing to launch a challenger to artificial intelligence phenomenon ChatGPT.
Shares spiked 13% on Tuesday after talk spread on social media that the SoftBank Group Corp.-backed firm would unveil a large-scale AI model in coming days, joining the hordes of software companies now seeking to compete with OpenAI's creation. A SenseTime representative confirmed the company will soon send out invitations to a media event, without further details.
Shanghai-based SenseTime, best known as a leader in AI-powered computer vision, would be joining an already crowded race to develop generative AI. Services like Midjourney, OpenAI's Dall-E and conversational bots from ChatGPT to Google's Bard have captured the popular imagination and sparked a rush to perfect the burgeoning technology. Alphabet Inc.'s biggest company has prioritized its response to ChatGPT, while Microsoft Corp. has pledged a $10 billion investment in the Silicon Valley startup led by Sam Altman that developed the bot.
“They are going to launch a large model next week, on the 10th of April,” said CMB International analyst Marley Ngan. The product will likely relate to AI-generated content, she added. “The management talked about this during the results announcement last week. They sent out the invitation today.”
SenseTime has trained text-to-image large generative models and has a pretrained large-language model in the works for mid-2023, it said in its annual earnings statement in late March. But the company, which is also backed by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., may have trouble getting the high-end technology it needs to develop large-scale AI models over the longer term.
SenseTime is operating under US Treasury and Commerce Department sanctions that inhibit its access to capital as well as crucial American components, and the Biden administration last year also imposed restrictions on the sale of AI accelerator chips to Chinese customers.
That's heightened uncertainty over the ability of Chinese AI efforts. That competitive landscape is currently led by Baidu Inc., which introduced its offering, dubbed Ernie Bot, to a mixed reception.
Baidu intends to integrate Ernie into its search and other software services over time, in similar fashion to Microsoft's integration of ChatGPT in its Edge browser and Google's use of Bard to augment search results. Alibaba and Tencent Holdings Ltd. executives have also talked about integrating AI into their products.
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