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Business News/ Technology / News/  Baidu sues app developers and Apple over fake Ernie bot app on App Store
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Baidu sues app developers and Apple over fake Ernie bot app on App Store

Baidu announced that it has filed lawsuits against both the app developers behind the counterfeit versions of its Ernie bot and Apple in Beijing Haidian People's Court.

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Baidu, the Chinese search engine, has taken legal action against both Apple and "relevant" app developers for distributing fake copies of its recently launched Ernie bot app on the App Store. Ernie, which utilizes artificial intelligence technology, has been dubbed as the most comparable alternative to the US-developed chatbot ChatGPT in China.

Late on Friday, Baidu announced that it has filed lawsuits against both the app developers behind the counterfeit versions of its Ernie bot and Apple in Beijing Haidian People's Court. Baidu clarified in a statement posted on its official "Baidu AI" WeChat account that there is no official app for Ernie available at the moment.

Baidu also shared a photo of its court filing, emphasizing that any Ernie app available on the App Store or other platforms is counterfeit until an official announcement is made. Apple has yet to comment on the matter. A search conducted by Reuters on Saturday showed that the App Store still offers at least four apps with the Chinese name of Ernie bot, but all of them are fraudulent.

Access to the Ernie bot is restricted to users who have obtained valid access codes, according to Baidu. In addition, the company cautioned against individuals attempting to sell access codes in its statement.

In March of this year, Baidu launched its AI-powered chatbot named Ernie, which stands for "Enhanced Representation through Knowledge Integration". The success of Microsoft-backed ChatGPT has spurred a race among Chinese tech firms and startups to create a competitor.

Initially, the Ernie bot was only accessible to a select group of users with invitation codes, but Baidu's cloud platform now allows companies to integrate the bot into their products by submitting an application.

(With inputs from Reuters)

 

 

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Published: 09 Apr 2023, 08:40 AM IST
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