Kite's code completion has supported Python for six years. Last January, the company landed $10m in funding – taking its total funding to $17m – as it launched more complex line-of-code completions for Python, which help predict the next several code elements developers are likely to type. Kite is the programmers' equivalent to Google's Smart Compose suggestions in Gmail.
When TabNine launched, Kite CEO Adam Smith was critical of its approach, arguing that TabNine didn't use any semantic information, so the model only had a limited understanding of the structure of the code that developers are working with. TabNine naturally disagreed with Smith.
The catch for Kite was that supporting new languages beyond Python required writing a different semantic engine for each language.
"We've kind of switched our technical approach to one that can scale easily across languages. And so that required a large upfront investment, and then each incremental language isn't that challenging," Smith told ZDNet.
Smith said Kite is now taking the same approach as TabNine for the new language rollouts.
"The first version for each new language will be that approach and then we'll be going into each one, especially the popular ones, and layering in semantics on top of that, so that's analyzing the structure of code and understanding it, which the natural language processing approach doesn't do."
According to Smith, with its Python developer users alone, Kite now has 250,000 monthly active users.
Kite today also launched Kite Pro, its first paid product for professional developers. Kite Pro costs $199 a year or $19.90 a month.
By this time next year he said Kite wants to have a product for all the top five to 10 programming languages.