After months of dizzying growth, traffic volume on platforms like ChatGPT is falling. What’s next for the AI revolution?
For the better part of a year now, the spectre of AI has been haunting many of the conversations around the modern white-collar workplace. What will AI be capable of? How many office jobs will it kill, if any? And how much do companies stand to gain ― or lose ― by chasing the AI trend?
The pendulum has swung in the other direction a little bit lately, with more questions being asked around the future of AI technology. For one thing, it’s driving less of the job market than it was last year. “The job market for AI specialists is coming back down to earth,” writes Bloomberg, who cited research from Revelio Labs that showed “job postings for AI-related technology jobs ― like machine-learning engineers or senior data scientists ― have become more scarce in recent months,” now at around 50 per cent of last summer’s peak.
“There might be something to the hype around AI starting to fade out,” Revelio economist Loujaina Abdelwahed told Bloomberg.
Users are dropping off, too. For the first time since it launched (and subsequently became the most trafficked site on the internet, for a period) ChatGPT’s monthly usage figures are dropping by nearly 10 per cent ― though some of that is likely explained by users switching to other, similar platforms, like Google’s Bard.
In an article titled The AI Hype Cycle is Distracting Companies, Eric Seigel writes in the Harvard Business Review that “AI suffers from an unrelenting, incurable case of vagueness ― it is a catch-all term of art that does not consistently refer to any particular method or value proposition,” and that these projects “often lack a keen focus on their value ― exactly how [AI] will render business processes more effective.”
Still, don’t count AI out, say business leaders ― it’s more likely the case that the underlying tech is still in its infancy. “It reflects some growing pains as companies struggle to move beyond the hype and incorporate AI into their business operations,” noted Bloomberg’s Matthew Boyle. “The decelerating demand adds to a growing sense among businesses that AI needs to get past the gee-whiz, anything’s-possible phase.”