Google Faces Criticism for AI Overviews’ Incorrect Responses

US search giant Google LLC has come under fire from the public following the strange and inaccurate answers provided by its new artificial intelligence (AI) search tool, AI Overviews.

Two weeks after its launch, various social media posts have circulated showing the feature’s errors, with AI Overviews suggesting one user to add “non-toxic glue” when they search how to make cheese stick to pizza.

The flawed AI-generated responses also included geologists advising people to eat one small rock per day.

A spokesperson for Alphabet Inc.-owned company said such incorrect answers were “isolated examples” and they were working quickly to better their systems.

Furthermore, AI Overviews generally worked properly, according to Google, saying the odd results were rare cases and did not reflect other users’ experiences.

The tech firm added that most responses included “high-quality information” and links that led users to look further.

Google’s Woes in Introducing New AI Products

The incident underlines the importance for the Mountain View, California-based company to integrate AI safely into its search engine, considering it is not the first time Google faced such an issue with its AI products after their release.

In February, it had to suspend its flagship large language model (LLM) Gemini for its responses that were inaccurate and mainly seen as over-politically correct.

Gemini’s predecessor, Bard, also started on the wrong foot in 2023, incorrectly answering queries about outer space. That resulted in Alphabet’s shares losing over 7% and removing about $100 billion from its market value.

However, financial analysts have stated that the search giant must work fast right now to keep up with the competition despite the issues it faces with its AI offerings.

“The user experience will just have to catch up”, according to analyst Thomas Monteiro.

While AI Overviews has been promoted as an AI tool capable of simplifying the search process, it remains in its experimental stages. Still, its use and reliability among users might grow, considering the Google search engine continues to be the top choice, holding 92% of the global search market.

Many industry experts also saw more AI-powered searches as the move forward, but there remain concerns over the AI industry using more power than traditional applications that should be addressed first.


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