Elon Musk’s Grok chatbot created by his startup xAI has been limited to Premium+ users on X ever since its launch last year. This limitation will soon be lifted as Musk, who is also the owner of X, has announced that Grok will become available to all Premium users soon, instead of only Premium+.

This move comes shortly after Elon Musk open-sourced the Grok-1 AI model behind the X chatbot but with a catch. The open-source version does not include the AI model’s training code and only includes the smallest model in the family.

This wider accessibility could signal the chatbot’s intentions to compete with other high-profile rivals including OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Anthropic’s Claude model. Musk recently targeted OpenAI with a lawsuit claiming that the startup headed by Sam Altman has deviated from its original goal of making open-source AI for all humanity. Musk alleges that OpenAI is just a cash cow for Microsoft now.

On the other hand, this move could also mean that X is simply trying to raise its user count, a figure that has been dwindling ever since Musk decided to rebrand Twitter into X. Meanwhile, its biggest social media rival, Threads, made by Meta, has been regaining its lost users by adding useful features over the past year.

Recent data from Sensor Tower shows that X users in the US have declined by 18% compared to last year while 23% have left the platform ever since Musk’s takeover in October 2023.

The company’s financial future may be at risk due to Musk’s contentious relationship with advertisers. Data from Sensor Tower indicates a significant drop in advertising spend on X, with 75 of the top 100 U.S. advertisers since October 2022 pulling their budgets from the platform.

To counteract the potential exodus of X users seeking alternatives, the platform might explore increased access of its chatbot. Such a move could keep users engaged and prevent them from switching to competing services, such as the decentralized networks Mastodon and Bluesky, or Meta’s Threads on Instagram.

Threads, in particular, has seen a rapid increase in popularity, amassing over 130 million monthly users by the end of the fourth quarter of 2023, leveraging Meta’s substantial support.

Via: Tech Crunch