2023 appears to be the year of AI search. Since the start of the year, both Microsoft and Google have launched AI-augments to their flagship product. Now, a small but notable competitor, Brave, is joining them. But Brave appears to be taking a more cautious approach to the 2023 AI trend.
In a blog post this week, Brave announced “Summarizer,” a new AI-powered feature for Brave Search. Summarizer functions much like Google’s Answer Box. When you type in a question or other query into the search bar, Brave displays a brief synopsis of the answer to your question or summarizes the critical points of the terms you’re searching for.
For example, when you type in “How much storage space do you get in an iPhone 14?,” the first entry on the results page is from the Summarizer reading, “The iPhone 14 (and iPhone 14 Plus) comes with 128GB, 256GB, or 512GB of storage.” And it provides links to where it pulled that information.
The way Brave is incorporating AI into search results is quite different than the way Microsoft and Google are approaching the new technology. Instead of giving users a chatbot to talk to, the Brave AI gives a brief answer and cites its sources with no ability to follow up with another question or refine the results as with Bing or Bard, which produce much longer answers and let users continue the conversation.
The difference, according to Brave, has to do with the reliability of the Large Language Models (LLM) employed by Microsoft, Google, and even OpenAI (maker of ChatGPT). Rather than rely on a purely generative AI model, Brave trained its AI to consider multiple sources of information available on the web to synthesize precise and up-to-date answers.
However, Brave’s creators remain wary of the new technology and justify their halfway approach by stating, “…if used properly, these new models can help the user navigate results, which is the approach we follow with the Summarizer. Chat-like interfaces and oracle-based search remain unproven and, as of today, we remain skeptical that they’ll be useful for all search tasks.”
Brave Synthesizer is now available for all Brave Browser users on desktop and mobile devices and on Brave’s web search page. If users wish not to use the AI, search assistant, they can disable it in their browser settings.
Source: Brave Blog