Google Mulls Charging For AI-Powered Search Engine

It would be the first time Google had charged for any of its content.

Google Mulls Charging For AI-Powered Search Engine

Google, the world's most popular search engine, is reportedly considering charging for premium AI-generated content. 

The firm, which is owned by Alphabet Inc., is rumored to be restructuring its economic model and considering placing some of its key products behind paywalls. 

It would be the first time Google had imposed fees for any of its content. 

Google stated that it has nothing to declare "right now."

According to the Financial Times (FT), it is considering adding certain AI-powered search functions to its premium membership services, which currently include access to its new AI assistant named Gemini, Google's version of the viral chatbot ChatGPT.

Executives have apparently yet to decide whether or not to proceed with the technology, but the FT reports that engineers are building the know-how required to deliver the service. 

According to the FT, Google's existing search engine will remain free of charge, but it will continue to display advertisements alongside searched-for information, which members will also view. 

Google has struggled to cope with the AI revolution; earlier this year, Gemini, which can answer queries in text but also generate visuals in response to text cues, sparked outrage when it incorrectly drew an image of the US Founding Fathers that included a black man.

It also created German troops from World War II, with an erroneously depicted black man and Asian lady. 

Google apologized and "paused" the tool, saying it was "missing the mark."

However, the firm remains the top choice for the vast majority of internet users when it comes to searching for information.

This article was originally published on the BBC.