Elon Musk’s xAI and Zuckerberg’s Meta Compete for Partnership with AI Chatbot Maker

Elon Musk CEO of Tesla

In a race to secure partnerships with top AI start-ups, Mark Zuckerberg’s Meta and Elon Musk’s xAI have been engaging in discussions with chatbot-maker Character.ai, as the AI arms race in Silicon Valley intensifies.

The Financial Times reports that as the competition to develop cutting-edge artificial intelligence technology heats up, tech giants Meta and Elon Musk’s xAI have been actively seeking partnerships with promising AI start-ups. Character.ai, a chatbot-maker backed by Silicon Valley venture firm Andreessen Horowitz, has recently found itself at the center of attention, with both Meta and xAI vying for a potential collaboration.

According to four people familiar with the matter, Meta has held early discussions with Character.ai about a possible tie-up. The talks revolved around the prospect of their top researchers working closely together on initiatives such as pre-training and developing AI models. Similarly, xAI has also engaged in exploratory talks with Character.ai regarding a similar partnership, as confirmed by two sources with knowledge of the discussions.

Happy Mark Zuckerberg

Happy Mark Zuckerberg (Jeff Bottari/Getty)

Despite the ongoing talks, no deals have been struck yet, the sources added. The interest in Character.ai underscores the growing trend of leading tech companies seeking to secure partnerships and investments in top AI start-ups as they race to develop cutting-edge technology.

Meta has been actively incorporating AI persona chatbots across its platforms, including Instagram, Facebook, and WhatsApp. In September, the company announced the integration of several chatbots that take on celebrity characters, such as rapper Snoop Dogg. Meanwhile, xAI has developed its own chatbot, Grok, which is available to premium subscribers on X/Twitter, the social media platform owned by Musk.

The discussions between Meta, xAI, and Character.ai have primarily focused on advancing research rather than acquisitions, as Big Tech groups remain cautious about attempting full takeovers of AI start-ups due to potential regulatory action worldwide. Microsoft’s $13 billion alliance with OpenAI, for example, is currently under examination by UK and US competition authorities, despite the two groups insisting that their partnership is not a merger.

Meta has been ramping up its investments in AI, with CEO Mark Zuckerberg setting his sights on becoming “the leading AI company in the world.” The company has taken a different approach to its rivals by developing open-source AI models, such as its flagship Llama models, which provide a cheaper alternative for enterprises and developers.

Elon Musk’s xAI is also making strides in the AI race, closing a $6 billion fundraise to help it gain ground on competitors like OpenAI, Google, and Meta. Musk has expressed his desire to build “maximum truth-seeking AI,” leveraging access to data and expertise from his other companies, such as Tesla and X, to gain an edge over rivals.

Read more at the Financial Times here.

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship.

Authored by Lucas Nolan via Breitbart May 29th 2024