ChatGPT's Custom Instructions feature is now available for everyone

The Custom Instructions feature can get you better answers with less work. Here's how.
Written by Sabrina Ortiz, Editor on
ChatGPT on a phone on top of a keyboard
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Getting your ideal answer from ChatGPT is a difficult skill to perfect. Usually, you have to carefully craft your initial response and follow up with a couple more prompts to get the end result you envisioned.

In late July, ChatGPT announced "Custom Instructions" to solve that issue. With Custom Instructions, users can set preferences that tailor how ChatGPT generates responses. 

Also: 6 helpful ways to use ChatGPT's Custom Instructions

The instructions are kept under consideration by ChatGPT when producing responses for every conversation after, so you don't have to put the same preferences in over and over to get the response you want. 

Upon release, the feature was only available for ChatGPT Plus users. However, on Wednesday, OpenAI announced that all users could access the feature on the free plan. 

The feature gives users two additional fields that they can use to customize their prompts: "What would you like ChatGPT to know about you to provide better responses?" and "How would you like ChatGPT to respond?"

Screenshot by Sabrina Ortiz/ZDNET

In the initial release, OpenAI shared demos of the feature with the examples of a third-grade teacher developing a lesson plan, a developer wanting code in a language other than Python, and a family of six dinner planning to show how Custom Instructions can help workflow. 

In all three cases, the users would be able to set the conditions once in the beginning and then get the results they want for their specific tasks over and over without having to do any tweaking or unnecessary repeating. 

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For example, the developer would only have to delineate once that they are a software developer only using Golang, want all of their responses to be in the language, and want code with no explanations and bias towards the most efficient solution. 

Custom Instructions
Screenshot by Sabrina Ortiz/ZDNET

This feature eliminates some of the challenges of prompt writing and makes it easier to get intended results faster, increasing chatbot assistance. 

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