Google may be about to make the biggest strategic change in its history – Tech News (Trending Perfect)


It remains to be seen whether Google will charge fees for its AI products, and if it does, whether other giant tech startups will follow suit. Each question will probably cost a few cents. We may have to pay extra for longer, more detailed answers. Or there may be a monthly subscription option that covers everything you could possibly want to know.

One point should certainly be made quite clear. As consumers, we have to beg Google to make us pay. Sure, free stuff is great to start with. But it also means that everything is so ad-driven that it becomes unusable. Paid AI will be much better, and more useful in the long run – and customers will come first.

Google owner Alphabet is considering whether to put its AI-powered search features behind a paywall.

Google owner Alphabet is considering whether to put its AI-powered search features behind a iStock

This may be the biggest strategy change in the company's 25-year history. According to reports, Alphabet, as the owner of the Google search empire is now called, is considering whether to put its AI-powered search features behind a paywall, forcing consumers to pay to use them; Or whether to keep it completely free, as the basic search functionality, email server, maps, and all the other services it offers are currently available.

Other AI services face a similar dilemma. ChatGPT, the current market leader, has a free version and a slightly superior paid model, and most other major AI tools opt for something similar.

This is a difficult decision for Google. After all, giving things away for nothing has yielded great results for the company. It has built businesses worth a staggering US$1.8 trillion ($2.7 trillion). Its advertising revenue amounts to $175 billion annually, most of which is from the search engine and other related products. It has been a winning formula, and it will be very difficult to change it now.


In contrast, artificial intelligence poses two main challenges. We may all gradually stop searching for information and products on the Internet, and simply ask an intelligent chatbot to do it for us. If that happens, Google Search Ads will become steadily less valuable. What's worse is that AI uses so much server power and such advanced chips, it makes it much more expensive to run than traditional web pages. Trapped between these two forces, Google may easily find that its profits begin to shrink.

We all love getting something for nothing. The explosion in web services over the past 20 years means that we're all getting a whole bunch of incredibly sophisticated products, effectively, for next to nothing. We can search for anything we want, send emails around the world, find anything on maps, chat with friends and family on social media, and store our photos forever – apart from a broadband connection, it costs us absolutely nothing. It is, in some ways, a great deal.

The catch was that it all had to be financed through advertising. Over time, research became more and more useless, as the answers to any question were dominated by supported results. Mail systems were crowded with letters from businesses, and maps were dominated by signs directed toward one store or another. Meanwhile, everything we said on social media was packaged up and sold as a commodity for marketers to trade. As one former web designer at Google said: “If you're not paying for the product, you're the product.”



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