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What is Grok? The new X/Twitter feature explained

You may have come across the term Grok on X, formerly known as Twitter. Launched in November 2023 in select countries and for Premium+ users, Grok is a product of xAI, a startup founded by X’s controversial owner, Elon Musk. Grok, however, can be found on the X platform.

To help make things less confusing, we’ve put together a guide on what Grok actually is, how it works and how users can access it. 

What is Grok?

Grok is an AI chatbot created by xAI. A startup launched by Elon Musk in 2023, xAI builds artificial intelligence to ‘accelerate human scientific discovery’.

Modelled after the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the AI chatbot Grok is intended to answer almost any question given and even suggest what questions users should ask. Available to use in both ‘regular’ and ‘fun’ mode, Grok promises to ‘answer spicy questions that are rejected by most other AI systems’. 

When set in so-called fun mode, Grok is said to give ‘edgy and satirical’ responses, but this can be turned off with ‘regular mode’.

XAI explained that one of the reasons behind building the chatbot was to build AI tools that benefit all of humanity and the team wants Grok to serve as a “research assistant for anyone.”

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How does Grok work?

Grok is powered by the Grok-1 engine, X’s recently developed large language model (LLM). XAI says that Grok has real-time knowledge of the world via the X platform, although it is still an early beta product. 

Elon Musk announced recently that xAI would open source Grok, which allows researchers and developers to build on the model, impacting how Grok updates in the future. 

Who can access Grok?

Grok is currently still in its early access program and is available in 47 selected countries, which doesn’t include the UK. If you are located in one of the 47 countries, you’ll also need to be an X Premium+ subscriber to test the model.

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