The First Illegal Generative AI Use Case

PLUS: 1 billion AI robots hinted by Sam Altman and Elon Musk.

Welcome back! In today's news we're looking at:

  • Regulation: US bans AI-generated robocalls in response to voter manipulation concerns.

  • Business: Gemini Advanced anchors Google's pivot to subscription revenue.

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News & Insights

US Makes AI-Generated Robocalls Illegal

The FCC's hammer just came down on AI-generated robocalls. In a decisive move, these robocalls are now illegal, effective immediately. This is a direct response to a surge in deceptive practices, including calls that mimic celebrities and manipulate voters. "We're putting the fraudsters behind these robocalls on notice," asserts FCC chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. With potential links to fraud and misinformation, this regulation empowers states to prosecute the use of AI voices in unsolicited calls as a crime in itself.

In a world where AI's applications are often celebrated, this step by the FCC underlines the necessity to curb its misuse. The recent impersonation of President Biden via robocall in New Hampshire is a stark example. The incident, involving thousands of calls, triggered a criminal investigation. The broader implications are clear: AI can be a double-edged sword. Legislators are catching up, having received a push from 26 state attorneys general. With AI deepfakes threatening the integrity of global elections, this legal stance is a significant, preemptive strike against digital deception. bbc

Gemini Advanced Is A Central Part Of Google’s Subscription Future

Google's latest move slices through the complexity of subscription models, placing its most advanced AI, Gemini Advanced, into the hands of paying customers. For $19.99 a month, subscribers not only get a chatbot but a suite of perks including 2TB of storage, a VPN, and more. The message is clear: Gemini is not a standalone product but the spearhead of a broader strategy aiming to pivot from ad revenue to subscription-based income.

The urgency stems from the soaring costs of AI hardware – Google TPUs and Nvidia GPUs are in high demand. Shimrit Ben-Yair, Google One's VP, candidly acknowledges that subscriptions will help defray these costs. This isn't just a business model shift; it's a survival tactic in an environment where ad revenue is under siege from competitors and legislators. The AI Premium plan, while enticing, comes with a catch: only the primary account holder reaps the full benefits, a strategic move to ensure long-term sustainability. wired

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Written by Isaac R. Ward, Casey Clifton, and Alex Brogan.

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