ByteDance Launches AI Interaction App ‘BagelBell’

Recently, ByteDance launched an AI character interaction app called “BagelBell,” sparking attention on its exploration of the AI social track.

“BagelBell” was developed by ByteDance’s Flow department. It is learned that the Flow department belongs to ByteDance’s Product Development and Engineering Department (internally referred to as “PDI”).

At the annual all-staff meeting in January 2024, ByteDance CEO Liang Rubo mentioned that the company only began discussing GPT in 2023, while the well-established large model start-ups in the industry were founded between 2018 and 2021. At the same time, Liang Rubo emphasized that the keyword for ByteDance in 2024 is “always starting a business, escaping the gravity of mediocrity.”

In this context, in November, 2023, ByteDance established a new department, Flow, which focuses on the development of the application layer of the AI large model. It has already launched several AI products, such as the AI application development platform “Coze” and the AI Q&A assistant “Dou Bao”. Zhu Jun, Vice President of ByteDance Products and Strategy, and Hong Dingkun, Vice President of ByteDance Technology, are respectively in charge of the department’s products and technology.

According to Sina News, the Flow department now has over 100 staff members. Before the Chinese New Year, the department conducted a round of headcount checks and is still recruiting a large number of product research positions through social recruitment, some of which are at the leader level. Campus recruitment also started recently.

A ByteDance employee revealed anonymously that many employees of Baidu‘s Ernie Bot team and Alibaba Cloud have been invited to the Flow department. However, the employee also admitted that the current workload of the entire department is very high, “The default setting is to work six days a week, and sometimes we also work overtime on Sundays.”

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