Bard launches in E.U. after addressing privacy concerns

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Google Bard, the AI chatbot that was delayed in the E.U. due to privacy concerns, has launched in the region. The company has addressed the concerns of the Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC) and has added the ability to opt out of personal data collection. Google Bard is available in over 40 languages and includes speech-to-text and text-to-speech support.

The launch of Google Bard in the E.U. comes amidst broader concerns about the privacy of generative AI and large language models. The European Data Protection Board (EDPB) is taking point on the issue for the bloc as a whole, and Google has been asked to perform a review and meet again with the Irish DPC in October.

The company also rolled out a number of new features in time for the E.U. launch, including support for 40 languages, including English, Chinese, Spanish, French, German, and Japanese. A text-to-speech function, five different conversational styles, and Google Lens compatibility.

Privacy concerns remain as users need to log in to personal or Google Workspace accounts, and default settings store activity for 18 months. Google claims it’s necessary for basic functionality, but critics argue it’s excessive. The European Data Protection Board (EDPB) is closely monitoring the situation, and Google will undergo a review in October to address privacy concerns.

The sources for this piece include articles in CPOMAGAZINE and TechRepublic.

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