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January 9, 2024

Perplexity AI Secures $73.6M to Redefine Knowledge Discovery

California-based startup on a mission to redefine knowledge discovery through its revolutionary AI-native search engine

In the ever-evolving landscape of technology, giants like Google are exploring the integration of Generative AI (GenAI) into their operations. Amidst this, startups are emerging, aiming to revolutionize AI-powered search by offering a superior user experience. A frontrunner in this endeavor is California-based Perplexity AI, which recently raised a substantial $73.6 million in a Series B funding round led by IVP, with participation from influential backers including Jeff Bezos, Elad Gil, Nat Friedman, Tobi Lutke, and Guillermo Rauch. This funding catapults Perplexity AI's valuation to an impressive $520 million.

Founded by former Google researchers with expertise in AI, distributed systems, search engines, and databases, Perplexity AI seeks to redefine knowledge discovery with its AI-native search engine. In a strategic move, the platform integrates both ChatGPT and the Google search engine, setting it apart from conventional search engines.

Unlike traditional search engines, Perplexity AI offers a chatbot-like interface that facilitates natural language queries. Users can pose questions such as "Do we burn calories while we sleep?" or "What is the least visited country?" The AI responds with summaries containing source citations, allowing users to ask follow-up questions for deeper exploration.

The platform provides a free version for users to access information using the default model. For enhanced features, there's a Pro version priced at $20/month. This premium offering grants users access to Perplexity API credits, enabling the use of advanced language models in projects. Additionally, users benefit from unlimited support for querying with Perplexity Copilot, the interactive research assistant. The Pro version also allows users to switch between models such as Google’s Gemini, Mistra 7Bl, Anthropic’s Claude 2.1, and OpenAI’s GPT-4.

Perplexity Copilot, the interactive research assistant, considers personal preferences during searches and file uploads. Users can upload documents, including images, and have models analyze them to formulate answers. This approach ensures accuracy and transparency, addressing concerns related to misinformation and AI hallucinations.

"In an era where misinformation and AI hallucinations are causing increasing concern, we’re built on the idea that accuracy and transparency are prerequisites to making AI-powered search ubiquitous," said Aravind Srinivas, co-founder and CEO of Perplexity. The company envisions replacing the inefficiencies of sifting through SEO spam and sponsored links with a more efficient way to consume and share information, propelling society into a new era of accelerated learning and research.

Josefina Dipaolo
Josefina Dipaolo
Content writer at TechNews180
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