April 18, 2024

Who Uses ChatGPT? (I Asked 100 People)

ChatGPT is the topic of many conversations. So I asked one hundred people about it. I present the data with personal insights throughout this post.

ChatGPT has been the topic of many dinner conversations since it launched not so long ago in 2022. Its tips and tricks receive a lot of discussion. But I wanted to know who uses ChatGPT, how, and why.

I conducted independent research to find out. I asked one hundred people eleven probing questions about ChatGPT. The respondents were students in no-code courses I taught on Udemy. The data is thus based on their responses.

We can assume two things about the data before continuing. The respondents are early adopters of technology. And some of the data is inline with Udemy's largest markets, e.g. demographic data.

I didn't answer the questions myself. But you'll find my insights shared throughout.

Let's dive in.

II: ChatGPT Demographics

It's easy to assume who uses ChatGPT. I use it. Others like me might use it. Others like you might use it, too. But who else uses it? I wanted to know.

Do You Subscribe To ChatGPT Plus?

No 60%
Yes 40%

What Country Do You Live In? (Top 10)

United States 46%
United Kingdom 6%
Germany 6%
France 5%
India 5%
South Africa 5%
Canada 3%
Japan 3%
Spain 3%
Denmark 2%

How Old Are You?

45-54 29%
55-64 28%
65 Or Older 20%
25-34 12%
35-44 8%
18-24 2%
Under 18 1%

ChatGPT appeals to a wide demographic. But most ChatGPT Plus subscribers were from the United States and aged 45-54.

The data hints at those in their prime working years getting the most value from ChatGPT. The value they're getting justifies the monthly subscription to ChatGPT Plus.

The demographic data goes against a common assumption. The assumption is the primary users of tools like ChatGPT are younger generations. The data reminds us that different generations have different technology needs.

I've been a ChatGPT Plus subscriber since I got access in March 2023. I have since become a self-proclaimed heavy user. That's the reason I can justify the subscription. Access to the latest models and features far exceeds the cost. But light users may struggle to justify adding ChatGPT to their subscription fatigue.

III: ChatGPT Usage

I now wanted to know how often people used ChatGPT. I also wanted to know if ChatGPT has replaced search engines like Google for most of their searches. Because using ChatGPT and how often someone uses it tells us two different things.

How Often Do You Use ChatGPT?

Weekly 48%
Daily 35%
Monthly 11%
Rarely 6%

Do You Use ChatGPT More Than Search Engines?

No 59%
Yes 23%
About The Same 18%

The engagement data hints at ChatGPT being a sticky and engaging product. Yet most respondents still use search engines like Google more than ChatGPT. The data highlights the difficulty involved in breaking the habit of default products. The difficulty might continue to increase as existing products integrate ChatGPT-like features.

It'll be interesting to see how many more or less people default to ChatGPT over time.

ChatGPT has replaced Google for most of my searches. But I am a self-proclaimed heavy user.

IV: ChatGPT Uses

There's an initial novelty factor when someone uses ChatGPT. The real reasons for using ChatGPT become evident when that novelty wears off. My next set of questions tried to figure that out.

Do You Use Custom GPTs In ChatGPT?

No 69%
Yes 31%

What Do You Use ChatGPT For? (Top 5 Multi-Responses)

Writing Assistance 75%
Research 71%
Coding Help 42%
Learning New Skills 42%
Entertainment 11%

The data reveals that most people use ChatGPT for work-related tasks. It might get people closer to Keynes's unfulfilled prophecy of the fifteen-hour workweek.

The data also reveals that most people don't use custom GPTs. It's like the Plugins they superseded. Users tend to use them in niche cases.

I use ChatGPT for work-related tasks more than personal tasks. I use it for research, writing, and coding. I use it to help me be more effective. The data suggests that others use it for similar reasons.

V: ChatGPT Trust

I wanted to know how many people filter ChatGPT through the Bitcoin idiom of "don't trust, verify". It's an adaptation of an old Russian proverb, "trust, but verify".

How Do You Gauge Risk Of Errors From ChatGPT?

I Assume Some Risk Of Inaccuracy And Verify Critical Information 55%
I Am Cautious But Consider Most Information Reliable 25%
I Generally Trust The Information Provided By ChatGPT 14%
I'm Skeptical And Verify Most Or All Information Provided 6%

How Do You Verify ChatGPT's Information For Accuracy?

Cross-Reference With Information From Reputable Websites 71%
Use Additional AI Tools For Cross-Verification 12%
I Don't Take Any Specific Measures To Verify Accuracy 10%
Consult With Experts Or Knowledgeable Individuals 7%

How Often Are ChatGPT's Responses Frustrating?

Sometimes 66%
Rarely 23%
Never 6%
Often 5%

The data shows that ChatGPT has a slight fragile trust problem. Most people assume its responses are somewhat inaccurate. They verify the responses by cross-referencing them with reputable websites.

There's a smaller percentage of people who trust ChatGPT. It's not an insignificant percentage. These people don't take any specific measures to verify the responses.

The data also shows that ChatGPT sometimes frustrates a significant amount of people. But I assume that most of them are not ChatGPT Plus subscribers.

Users' frustration and trust levels are interesting metrics for each model.

I'm only sometimes frustrated by ChatGPT. It helps me to be more effective more than not. But I still have no reason to trust it. And it's for that reason I'm of the Bitcoin idiom, "don't trust, verify".

VI: Beyond ChatGPT

Most people might have heard of ChatGPT. But most people might not have used it. Or at least they don't use it often. Those who use it are likely to use similar tools. I wanted to know what tools they were.

What Other AI Tools Do You Use? (Top 8 Multi-Responses)

Microsoft Copilot 54%
Google Gemini 49%
Midjourney 31%
Claude 25%
GitHub Copilot 17%
Perplexity AI 14%
Meta Llama 6%
Stability AI 3%

The data suggests that ChatGPT may be the most popular AI tool but not the only AI tool. It suggests that people use AI tools like search engines or social media platforms. They use each of them for different reasons. And each tool is fighting for more of their attention in this valuable market.

I'm not a ChatGPT fanboy. I use various AI tools. I use them depending on wherever they excel. An example is that I favour Perplexity AI over ChatGPT for research tasks.

ChatGPT is making a significant impact across spectrums.

The one hundred generous respondents helped to paint a picture of who uses ChatGPT, why, and how.

They suggest that the primary users of ChatGPT are those in their prime working years. Many continue to prefer search engines like Google. But they are integrating ChatGPT into their workflow. That signals a shift in digital habits. The motivator is an increase in effectiveness. That signals a broader growing trust in AI tools. But the trust is fragile. The deterioration of trust in one AI tool could increase the number of users in another.

I'm excited to see how ChatGPT and other AI tools evolve. It'll be interesting to see how these responses change over future responses.

Ravinder Deol

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