Russian bank is working on ChatGPT competitor GigaChat

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Russian bank Sberbank has announced GigaChat, a generative AI chatbot to compete with chatbots like ChatGPT. GigaChat is focused on the Russian market and can therefore communicate better with Russian users, according to Sberbank.

GigaChat can only be used by invitation for the time being and is still being tested, writes the bank. The chatbot can answer questions, have conversations and write code. GigaChat supports multi-modal generative AI and can, for example, create images based on text input, which many other AI chatbots cannot yet do. The chatbot is based on NeONKA, short for Neural Omnimodal Network with Knowledge-Awareness. This consists of several neural networks. Sberbank says it wants to publicly release the 3.5 version of NeONKA with 13 billion parameters.

The bank says GigaChat is already being actively used in Sberbank’s products and services, including a virtual assistant. Sberbank also talks about an API for developers and companies that should become available in the future. Sberbank is Russia’s largest bank and has according to Reuters invested heavily in its own technology in recent years. For example, the bank and Russia want to become less dependent on Western countries. This would only have become more important since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and subsequent sanctions.

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