Swahili becomes first African language to be added Google's Chatbot

Swahili has become the first African language to be incorporated in Google’s AI-driven chatbot, Bard.

The tech company, widely used in the world, has also brought on board 39 new languages in 59 countries and territories; like Chinese, German, Spanish, Arabic, Hindi, and Spanish.

According to Sub-Saharan Africa Head of Public Affairs Dorothy Ooko, users can now access Bard in their preferred language, with text-to-speech also enabled in eight languages.

"We're excited that this is Bard's largest expansion to date - we see its global availability as a great democratizer of knowledge," Google Sub-Saharan Africa Head of Communications and Public Affairs Dorothy Ooko said.

Swahili is ranked the third most spoken language in Africa and among the 10 most widely spoken languages in the world.

The expansion can also allow users to adjust Bard’s responses by changing the tone and style of its responses to five different options: simple, long, short, professional or casual.

For now, Google says this feature is live in English but is expected to expand to new languages in future.

Bard is Google’s rival to ChatGPT, the AI chatbot by the Microsoft-backed company OpenAI. It was launched in March, this year.