Midjourney might have established itself as the state of the art image generation tool right now, having conclusively pulled ahead of Stable Diffusion, but it might be a while before it leaves the Discord server it currently inhabits.
Midjourney has been alpha testing non-discord versions of its products for more than six months, founder David Holz has said. “We’ve been alpha testing non discord versions of our product with tens of thousands of people for nearly 6 months,” he tweeted, in response to a user asking when Midjourney will be available outside of Discord.
But six month is an eternity in the AI space, and this indicates that Midjourney is in no hurry to create a platform for API for its services. David Holz said as much in response to another query. “Everyone tries to make a platform first. This was the greatest failed thesis of the 2010s tech industry. We forget the iPhone launched without an app store. Before you can make a great platform, you must first make a great product,” Holz said. “We’re focusing on having a really solid product before we make a ecosystem. One day,” he added.
It’s thus unclear when this One Day might arrive, but it looks as though it isn’t exactly around the corner. Midjourney now clearly has the best image generation solution available, especially after its latest 5.1 update. Midjourney’s images are more detailed than competitors like Stable Diffusion and Dall-E, and have fewer anomalies that AI-generated images are often prone to.
Midjourney, however, is available only through Discord, and this has prevented researchers from tinkering with its code, as with Stable Diffusion, or creating products and services on top of it. Midjourney now has a massive Discord channel with over 15 million members, making it one of the largest Discord channel anywhere, but Discord is still pretty niche, and being available only on Discord makes it harder for the broader adoption of Midjourney. But this is something that Midjourney’s CEO seems to be comfortable with, and seems willing to keep working on the product until it’s opened to the broader public.