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X is Looking to Add Grok Chatbot Summaries of Trending Topics

X is looking to further integrate its new “Grok” chatbot tool, by adding new Grok-generated descriptions of trending topics to the Explore page in the app.

Grok summaries

As you can see in this example, shared by X News Daily (originally posted by user @swak_12), the new format for Explore, which is still in testing, and may not ever make it to live production, would showcase Grok-generated summaries of all the key issues of the day, ideally providing more insight into why a certain topic is trending.

That could help to spark more interest and engagement, though at the same time, there is a risk that it could do the opposite, by giving users a rundown of the crux of each trend without needing to tap through to find out more.

The trade-off then would be more dedicated engagement around each topic, based on more nuanced understanding, as opposed to a more clickbait-style approach, where you’re luring users with a single term or name to find out more.

Hard to know which would be better for activity numbers in the app.

Grok, which X first launched to selected users in November, is X’s answer to the current generative AI trend, with X owner Elon Musk looking to get into the race with a dedicated chatbot that’s trained on X data specifically. The tool is currently available to X Premium+ subscribers.

This comes after Musk sought to cut off access to X’s user data and content for training large language models (LLMs), which was specifically in response to OpenAI using X data in its development of GPT, the LLM that powers ChatGPT, Dall-E, and more.

Musk has personal ties in this instance, as he was an early investor in OpenAI when the project was originally pitched as a non-profit exploring the potential of AI for varying purpose. Musk donated $10 million to the initiative, then sought to take it over as CEO, an overture which was rebuffed by OpenAI leadership.

In response, Musk withheld future donations and distanced himself from the project. But now, years later, Musk is annoyed that OpenAI has become a for-profit business, making money on the back of his large, initial donation.

And that angst makes sense. If I’d given $10 million to a project for no return, only to see it making billions down the road, I’d be upset too, but at the same time, trying to take them on by cutting off all access to X posts, then creating your own chatbot, is an expensive path to retribution for a personal grievance.

But that’s seemingly what Musk is pushing for, as he plans to buy up more AMD chips, and invest over $1 billion into AI development in 2024. Ostensibly, that will also incorporate Tesla’s AI development, but a big part of this will also go towards maximizing Grok, and converting valuable X post insights into a more real-time, engaging chatbot experience.

Though again, it’ll be a difficult path. For comparison, Meta is reportedly spending around $10 billion a year on AI development, while Open AI CEO Sam Altman recently asked for “trillions” for his company’s next-level initiatives.

So X’s spending in this area is fairly low by comparison, which could make it difficult for Grok to become a competitive offering. But Musk is relying on the value of X data, as well as his own nous for tech development, in order to propel the project forward, which will likely, eventually see him seek new capital for his xAI projects.

At the same time, you can expect to see X looking to bring Grok more upfront, as it works to both lure more paying users and generate more interest in the project.

Which is what this new display is designed for, and maybe, by showcasing more Grok trend summaries, that will work to maximize interest, and get more people signing up.

I haven’t seen a heap of enthusiasm for the project, and X Premium subscriptions are still not jumping in any significant way. But maybe, if X can somehow highlight the differentiation of the chatbot, that will work as a broader product pitch. 

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