OpenAI, the artificial intelligence startup, has announced a temporary halt to new subscriptions for its paid ChatGPT Plus service, citing “overwhelming demand” in the wake of the recent launch of its GPT-4 Turbo model. This move comes shortly after the company unveiled its latest developments at the OpenAI DevDay conference, where it introduced the more affordable Turbo language models and the custom GPT creator feature.
ChatGPT Plus, priced at $20 per month, offers a range of premium features. Initially, subscribers gained access to OpenAI’s GPT-4 large language model, along with features like ChatGPT plugins and integration with the DALL-E AI image generator. However, with the recent update, subscribers now also enjoy access to GPT-4 Turbo and the ability to create their own GPTs for specific tasks without any coding knowledge.
The excitement generated by these new features has led to a surge in demand, prompting OpenAI to temporarily suspend new sign-ups to ensure a smooth user experience. OpenAI CEO Sam Altman explained in a post on X (formerly Twitter) that the pause in sign-ups is necessary to manage the unexpectedly high usage following DevDay and maintain quality service.
The move has sparked some debate within the ChatGPT community, as the suspension contradicts one of the original selling points of ChatGPT Plus – guaranteed access even during peak demand. Some users question the necessity of the subscription plan, pointing to alternatives like Bing chat that offer similar features for free.
Key features of ChatGPT Plus include faster response times, improved stability, better translation capabilities, and priority access to new features. For users who rely heavily on the tool and experience challenges due to high traffic, a subscription may be worthwhile. However, for occasional users, the free version may suffice.
While the subscription sign-up is currently paused, interested users can join a waitlist to be notified when registrations reopen. ChatGPT Plus is available globally, including in the United States, UK, Canada, Australia, India, and more, once new subscriptions become available again.