OpenAI’s ChatGPT May Soon Become Android Phones’ Default Digital Assistant Replacing Google
OpenAI’s ChatGPT might soon be able to replace Google Assistant on Android phones as a default assistant, as revealed through internal code.
OpenAI’s ChatGPT may soon emerge as a contender to replace Google Assistant, based on recent developments within the ChatGPT Android app. While the platform has been a central player in the 2023 surge of generative AI, accessing ChatGPT on Android has always required users to navigate to OpenAI’s website or utilize its dedicated app present on the Google Play store.
However, recent code revelations hint at a future where ChatGPT could serve as the default digital assistant app, simplifying user interactions with the chatbot.
ChatGPT’s Android app recently underwent a significant update (version 1.2023.352), released last month. Notably, this update introduced a new activity named “com.openai.voice.assistant.AssistantActivity,” suggesting potential strides towards the option for ‘default assistant’ functionality.
Despite being disabled by default, manual enabling of this activity reveals an overlay on the screen, resembling the in-app voice chat mode animation. This overlay, designed to appear on top of other apps, implies the possibility of invoking ChatGPT from any screen. The development is reportedly indicative of a behind the scenes work-in-progress feature.
Notably, another evidence suggests that the app’s readiness for default assistant status is still in flux. The addition of an XML file named “assistant_interaction_service” in the latest updated version provides insights into OpenAI’s intentions.
The file’s inner declarations have been coded for the app to be recognized as a “default digital assistant app.”
The existence of the XML file hints at OpenAI‘s plans to streamline ChatGPT’s accessibility on Android devices. If realized, users could potentially launch ChatGPT by long-pressing the home button or swiping up from a bottom corner. While some functionalities may be restricted due to privileged APIs, OpenAI’s strategic move aligns with the imminent launch of Google Assistant with Bard, aiming to retain users by enhancing ChatGPT’s accessibility.
Additionally, OpenAI appears to be exploring avenues to make ChatGPT more user-friendly on Android. The latest app version introduces a Quick Settings tile, designed as a shortcut to launch ChatGPT’s new assistant mode. Although currently disabled by default, many users have reported challenges activating the assistant activity or the Quick Setting tile, indicating ongoing refinement efforts.
As ChatGPT positions itself as a potential default assistant on Android, the tech community eagerly anticipates further developments in this intersection of AI and mobile functionality.
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