OpenAI has announced that it will be adding plug-in support to its popular chatbot, ChatGPT. The move is expected to significantly expand the chatbot's capabilities and give it access to live data from the web for the first time.

Until now, ChatGPT has been restricted to using only its training data, which was limited to information from before 2021. However, the new plug-ins will allow the chatbot to interact with specific websites and even browse the web, potentially making it a versatile interface for various services and websites.

The company says that the plug-ins could help ChatGPT perform actions on behalf of users, such as booking flights and hotels. OpenAI has already rolled out plug-in access to a small group of users.

There are currently 11 plug-ins for external sites, including Expedia, OpenTable, Kayak, Klarna Shopping, and Zapier, with OpenAI providing some plug-ins of its own, including one for interpreting code and one called "Browsing" that enables ChatGPT to get information from the internet.

However, the company recognizes that there are safety and security concerns associated with the use of the plug-ins. OpenAI says it has taken these concerns into consideration and has implemented several safeguards, including limiting availability of the plug-ins to a small number of developers and ChatGPT Plus users.

The company has also provided a sign-up waitlist for those interested in using the plug-ins.