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OpenAI GPT-5 Launch Imminent? Mounting Pressure as Chinese LLMs Outperform ChatGPT-4

Published 2 days ago
Eddie Mitchell
Published 2 days ago
Key Takeaways
  • Reports are circulating that Chinese-made LLMs are outperforming ChatGPT-4o in several key metrics.
  • Rumors of ChatGPT-5 launching in 2024 could come true as OpenAI seeks to stay on top of China’s AI revolution.
  • OpenAI services have been banned from China and Hong Kong since July 9, 2024.

Competition in the AI market is heating up, fueling rumors of ChatGPT-5 being in production.

OpenAI’s reign as de facto king of Artificial Intelligence may be coming to an end as Chinese AI firms begin to outperform ChaptGPT-4o. With Chinese competition accelerating, it seems that the quest for AI dominance enters into yet another innovation cycle


Ever since OpenAI CEO Sam Altman hinted that they’ll be releasing an “amazing new model this year” on the Lex Fridman podcast, rumors of a ChatGPT-5 have been circulating.

Although Altman claimed at the time that he didn’t know what they would call this new model, many industry observers speculated that the firm was preparing to release ChatGPT-5.

Looking at the OpenAI’s almost yearly  release of GPT updates since 2018, the gap between updates is growing shorter, giving additional weight to the rumors of ChatGPT-5 launching at some point in 2024.

Given OpenAI’s departure from China and increasing competition from Chinese developers, Altman’s firm may be under pressure to release ChatGPT-5.

Chinese AI Competition

China’s Large Language Model (LLM) companies are ramping up efforts to accelerate their AI prowess as domestic firms build technologies that are beginning to outperform ChatGPT-4o.

According to a research paper  that compares ChatGPT-4’s performance to Chinese LLMs, namely Ernie Bot, ChatGLM, and SparkDesk, OpenAI’s flagship generative AI is underperforming its Chinese competitors.

At the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC ) in early July, hosted in Shanghai, Chinese AI firms were eager to unveil their latest upgrades on large models. Notably, SenseTime’s SenseNova 5.5 was reported to showcase capabilities that outshine ChatGPT-4o.


According to a survey  from Coleman Parkes Research and U.S. analytics software company SAS, China is leading the world when it comes to AI adoption. According to the report, China is home to over 4,500 AI businesses and has submitted  over 38,000 AI patents between 2014 and 2023. Comparatively, the U.S. filed 6,276 patents in that same time period.

China is also believed to have an advantage in big data, which is fed to these new LLMs that are anticipated to dominate AI throughout the rest of the decade, leaving many to wonder how OpenAI can compete.

OpenAI Blocks Chinese Access

China’s bid to retain domestic AI developers will now be significantly easier given that OpenAI blocked its tools and services on July 9, 2024.

The announcement from OpenAI came at the end of June following the issuance of draft rules from the U.S. Department of the Treasury that ban, or require notification of certain investments, in AI and other tech sectors in China.

Whilst this causes some short-term pains for Chinese developers, OpenAI’s suspension of API services to China is expected to boost domestic AI platforms, such as SenseTime’s SenseNova 5.5, which is reportedly matching , or outperforming ChatGPT-4.

Oddly, OpenAI’s most significant shareholder, Microsoft, has no intentions of removing its Microsoft Azure OpenAI Service offerings to China.

This curious approach came just before news of Microsoft relinquishing its seat on OpenAI’s board as anti-trust investigations into Microsoft’s investment in OpenAI raised concerns that it violated competition rules.

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