There is a new AI in town, so forget about ChatGPT. The Indian ride-hailing company Ola recently introduced Krutrim, a huge language model that it developed internally with the goal of controlling the local market.
This week in Bengaluru, CEO Bhavish Aggarwal took center stage to highlight Krutrim's linguistic prowess. It turns out that this AI can answer questions in ten distinct Indian languages in addition to English. In a live demo, Aggarwal showcased Krutrim's multilingual capabilities by having the AI alternate between Hindi, Tamil, and Telugu.
So why develop an Indian chatbot when there are already big players in the space? Well, Aggarwal feels foreign AI models don’t grasp the complexity and nuance of Indian languages and culture. Krutrim has been crafted specifically for Desi users, built from the ground up and trained on a ginormous dataset of 2 trillion tokens collected from local sources, according to Aggarwal. The end result is an AI that’s better at understanding contextual references and colloquial phrases specific to Indian languages.
There are two versions of Ola's AI models: Krutrim and Krutrim Pro. The basic Krutrim model can generate responses in ten languages and understands 22 Indian languages. It appears to perform better on benchmarks for comprehending Indian language than models such as GPT-4 and Llama. Like the most recent ChatGPT versions, it can also answer in voice and accept voice input.
Ola intends to release Krutrim Pro next quarter, which is billed as a more potent, multi-modal model for enterprise use.
For his part, Aggarwal believes India needs homegrown AI solutions built specially for our needs. Krutrim has been created from scratch using an India-first approach – high local relevance at budget pricing.
Starting next month, anyone can sign up on the Krutrim website to access the basic chatbot. Ola will also be launching Krutrim APIs in February for companies and developers to integrate into their own products and services.