What you need to know
- During Meta's developer conference, Meta Connect 2023, the company unveiled a new AI-powered experience dubbed Meta AI.
- Meta is partnering with Microsoft to bring this experience to life and will be integrating Bing, which will be used to provide real-time web results for queries.
- The AI capabilities will be integrated across WhatsApp, Messenger, and Instagram.
- The company also unveiled AI stickers, which can be customized based on the user's preference to foster better communication.
- Meta also announced that it will launch its augmented reality headset, Meta Quest 3, later in the fall on October 10 for $499.99.
Meta's two-day developer conference, Meta Connect 2023, kickstarted yesterday. The company made a host of announcements, including the unveiling of AI features that will extend across several applications. The conference also focused on the release of the much-anticipated Meta Quest 3, which is set for later in the fall on October 10, 2023, at $499.99. The VR headset will compete with Microsoft's HoloLens and Apple's upcoming Vision Pro headset.
Alongside these announcements, Meta unveiled that it is bringing a new AI-powered experience and features across its apps, including WhatsApp, Instagram, and Messenger. You guessed it, the company is partnering with Microsoft to bring this whole concept full circle.
Per the company's announcement, the AI experience will rely on Microsoft's search engine, Bing, to provide real-time web results for queries.
"It’s powered by a custom model that leverages technology from Llama 2 and our latest large language model (LLM) research," said Meta. "In text-based chats, Meta AI has access to real-time information through our search partnership with Bing and offers a tool for image generation."
Like Microsoft's just-released AI stickers on SwiftKey, Meta is also hopping on this bandwagon and has unveiled AI-generated stickers that will be available across its messaging apps to foster effective communication.
What's more, users will be able to generate customized and tailored AI stickers using prompts. Meta disclosed that this new feature will leverage the capabilities of AI models, including Llama 2 and Emu, to achieve this, ultimately providing users with additional ways to communicate and express themselves. The feature will start rolling out to English-speaking users next month.
AI Characters with different flavors
Have you ever pictured yourself having a one-on-one conversation with your favorite celebrity? Seems like a dream, right? Well, there might finally be a way around this, thanks to Meta's debut of 28 new AI characters for its messaging apps.
According to the company, each character will portray a unique personality. It also added that world-renowned personalities and celebrities like Snoop Dogg, Kendall Jenner, Tom Brady, and more would voice some of the new characters.
Additionally, Meta indicated that it wanted to make the new experience life-like, which is why the new characters will also have social media profiles with detailed information regarding their background.
Analysis: Dreams do come true
A while back, I listed some features I'd like to see come to WhatsApp to make it the dream messaging app. Incorporating AI capabilities into the platform was among my top requests, and I'm glad to see Meta finally bringing this dream to reality.
It will be interesting to test out the AI characters voiced by celebrities as well as the new AI experience, Meta AI.
What are your thoughts on Meta finally joining the AI craze and incorporating the technology across its apps? Let us know in the comments below.
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Kevin Okemwa is a seasoned tech journalist based in Nairobi, Kenya with lots of experience covering the latest trends and developments in the industry. With a passion for innovation and a keen eye for detail, he has written for leading publications such as OnMSFT, MakeUseOf, and Windows Report, providing insightful analysis and breaking news on everything revolving around the Microsoft ecosystem. While AFK and not busy following the ever-emerging trends in tech, you can find him exploring the world or listening to music.