ChatGPT is completely free to use, but that doesn’t mean OpenAI isn’t also interested in making some money.
ChatGPT Plus is a subscription model that gives you access to a completely different service based on GPT-4, with faster speeds and more reliable access.
What is ChatGPT Plus?
Insider information about ChatGPT Plus had been leaking for weeks, but on February 1, 2023, OpenAI, the company that created the well-known generative text AI, finally made the formal announcement.
The blog post explains that the purpose of launching ChatGPT as a research preview was to "learn more about the system's strengths and weaknesses, and gather user feedback to help us improve upon its limitations." Since then, "millions of people have provided us with feedback, we've made several significant updates, and we've seen users find value across a range of professional use cases, including writing and editing content, coming up with ideas, getting assistance with programming, and learning new topics."
Like ChatGPT Standard, ChatGPT Plus is an AI chatbot that provides a highly precise machine learning helper and can conduct natural language "chats." The chatbot's most recent iteration is the one that is currently accessible.
How much does it cost?
A lot less than it was rumoured to cost, ChatGPT Plus has a monthly fee of $20. Naturally, ChatGPT's free version is still available, so using the service in the future won't involve paying.
But it will be interesting to see how long OpenAI maintains this price. The cost of running ChatGPT Plus has been reported to be as high as $700,000 a day, though we are unsure of the exact number of members it currently has.
What does ChatGPT Plus include?
When ChatGPT first launched, it was stated that it gave users access to three distinct features:
The main advantage of purchasing ChatGPT Plus is having access to ChatGPT during busy hours. The success of the subscription model should be guaranteed by the fact that some people have to wait for hours to enter. Even if it's unclear what the new features will be, the thought of having early access to upgrades and new features is intriguing.
But it's not just a matter of moving to the front of the queue. This most recent large language model (LLM), GPT-4, is officially supported by ChatGPT Plus, substantially enhancing what conventional ChatGPT, which employs GPT-3.5, can do. According to OpenAI, GPT-4 is a considerably more effective collaborative tool for creative activities and offers 40% more factual responses. Although we are still learning exactly how much more powerful GPT-4 is than GPT-3.5, some researchers think it may even include early signs of AGI (artificial general intelligence).
Other significant enhancements made possible by GPT-4 include access to data obtained from the internet before 2022, the capacity to receive visual input rather than just text, and substantially lengthier text inputs and outputs. In contrast to ChatGPT's 3,000 word limit, GPT-4 has a staggering 25,000 word limit.
Why does OpenAI want you to pay up?
Due to ChatGPT's popularity, there is an urgent need to increase its accessibility and speed to a larger user base. This is due to ChatGPT's high operating costs, which include hosting, maintenance, updating, upgrading hardware, paying investors, etc. Some estimates put the cost of operation at $100,000 per day, or up to $3 million per month! Upgrades to the servers should be covered by the premium subscription.
It's safe to believe that OpenAI will be able to manage bandwidth concerns with a premium subscription, especially during busy times of the day.