Does ChatGPT have access to the internet?

Does ChatGPT have access to the internet?
Jim Casson Updated on by

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OpenAI continues to race forward with its viral chatbot, ChatGPT. The latest upgrade has left users asking whether ChatGPT now has access to the internet. 

We can report that yes – ChatGPT has access to the internet with the help of a plug-in. Up until now, you may have noticed that ChatGPT was trained on data sources up to September 2021. 

OpenAI has described the addition of internet plugins to be like giving ChatGPT ‘eyes and ears’.

Whether you’re using GPT-3.5 or GPT-4, its inability to respond to real time data has certainly been a downside to the platform. With an add-on, OpenAI says ChatGPT will now be able to surf the internet and interact with specific websites. To clarify, this means ChatGPT can read data it deems worthy for your queries, but can’t yet fill in forms or do anything else yet online.

As you can imagine, this new capability opens a lot of doors, potentially transforming ChatGPT into a wide-ranging interface for different sites and services. So far, plugins have been introduced gradually by companies including Expedia, Slack, Shopify and more.

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What AI does have internet access?

ChatGPT joins a number of other AI programs that have internet access. These include Google, who also recently released Google Bard with internet access.

The platform is in testing at the moment, but users can join the waitlist and apply to use it. 

Bard has an age restriction, likely in an effort to combat the aforementioned spread of misleading and/or explicit information on the service, which is always a possibility whilst it has access to the internet.

Because GPT-4 does not have access to the internet, no age restriction needs to be placed on the service, and is instead more widely available to use

Interesting, it’s led many people to question whether AI chatbots like ChatGPT and Google Bard will eventually replace Google search. For now though, it looks like we’ll have a bit of time before we’re reporting on that story.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use ChatGPT without the internet?

No, you must be connected to the internet to use ChatGPT, as it is currently an online-only platform.

Can ChatGPT access the internet?

Yes, by using an a plugin, users can now access real time information fetched by ChatGPT.