A poll indicates that very few individuals frequently use “much hyped” artificial intelligence (AI) products such as ChatGPT.

Researchers polled 12,000 people in six nations, including the UK, and only 2% of British respondents said they used such tools on a regular basis.

However, according to a survey conducted by the Reuters Institute and Oxford University, young people are bucking the trend, with those aged 18 to 24 being the most avid consumers of technology.

The principal author of the paper, Dr. Richard Fletcher, told the BBC that there was a “mismatch” between the “hype” around AI and the “public interest” in it.

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The survey looked at attitudes toward generative AI tools, which are a new class of technologies that can respond to simple text prompts with human-sounding responses as well as graphics, audio, and video.

When ChatGPT was launched in November 2022, generative AI became well known.

The attention OpenAI’s chatbot received sparked an epic arms race among tech companies, which have since invested billions of dollars in building their own generative AI features.

What exactly is AI?
However, this study shows that, despite the money and attention focused on generative AI, it has yet to become a part of people’s daily internet use.

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“Large parts of the public are not particularly interested in generative AI, and 30% of people in the UK say they have not heard of any of the most prominent products, including ChatGPT,” stated Professor Fletcher.

Hopes and Fears
The new generation of AI technologies has ignited a heated public discussion about whether they will have a positive or detrimental influence.

Optimists have predicted a number of outcomes, including an increase in economic development and the discovery of new lifesaving treatments.

Meanwhile, pessimists have gone so far as to claim that technology poses a threat to humanity.

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This study aimed to evaluate what the public believes, and found:

The majority believe that generative AI will have a significant impact on society in the next five years, notably in news, media, and research.

Most believe generative AI will improve their personal lives.

When asked whether generative AI will make society overall better or worse, people were generally more pessimistic.

“People’s hopes and fears about generative AI vary greatly depending on the sector,” Dr. Fletcher told the BBC.

“People are generally optimistic and about the use of generative AI in science and healthcare, but more wary about it being used in news and journalism, and worried about the effect it might have on job security.”

He stated that the findings demonstrated the importance of all parties, including governments and regulators, applying subtlety to the AI debate.

The findings were based on replies from an online questionnaire distributed in six countries: Argentina, Denmark, France, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States.