Character.AI, an AI chatbot software backed by venture capital company Andreessen Horowitz (a16z), has amassed over 1.7 million installs in just one week since its release, far outpacing the 500,000 downloads of OpenAI’s ChatGPT mobile app in a comparable period. Noam Shazeer and Daniel De Freitas, two AI researchers who created the Palo Alto-based business, provide AI companions with distinct personalities and let customers develop their own characters. The reputation of the app’s creators and the rising demand for AI in consumer mobile applications have both had a significant impact on the app’s outstanding market performance.
AI app maker Character.AI, backed by a16z and created by former Google AI researchers Noam Shazeer and Daniel De Freitas, recently launched to strong success, claiming over 1.7 million installs in its first week. The company had previously announced $150 million in Series A funding, valuing the business at $1 billion. The app offers users the ability to create and interact with customizable AI companions with distinct personalities.
The founders, known for their work on Google’s LaMDA (Language Model for Dialogue Applications), departed from Google in 2021 due to frustration with the company’s reluctance to widely deploy AI chatbots. They believed in the transformative potential of AI in search and other areas. Their startup, Character Technologies, is now home to Character.AI.
The Character.AI app launched on May 23 for iOS and Android. The app had a strong initial showing, particularly on Google Play, with over 700,000 Android installs in the first 48 hours, surpassing top entertainment apps like Netflix, Disney+, and Prime Video. The popularity of the app continues to grow, notably in large Android markets like Indonesia, the Philippines, Brazil, and the U.S.
Many of character.ai employees came from Google brain and part of the Attention Is all You Need Team
📈 Character.AI, an AI chatbot app, reported over 1.7 million installations in its first week of launch, which outpaced OpenAI’s ChatGPT mobile app’s first week performance.
🤖 The app, funded by venture capital firm a16z, allows users to create customizable AI companions with unique personalities.
🏢 Character.AI was founded by AI experts Noam Shazeer and Daniel De Freitas who previously led the team that developed Google’s LaMDA (Language Model for Dialogue Applications).
🌐 Prior to the app’s launch, the Character.AI web platform was receiving over 200 million visits per month, with an average user session time of 29 minutes.
📊 Character.AI reports high user engagement, with users spending over two hours on the platform on average after sending their first message to a character.
💼 The startup launched a premium service, c.ai+, offering benefits similar to those of ChatGPT Plus, including faster response times, access during peak usage periods, and early access to new features.
☁️ Character.AI announced a strategic partnership with Google Cloud, using Google Cloud’s Tensor Processor Units to train and infer large language models more efficiently.