The growing fascination for generative AI tools saw searches for ChatGPT on Google (GOOG  ) (GOOGL  ) rise to a global record high in November and this week the company's paid service ChatGPT Plus was closed to new sign ups due to high demand.

Google Trends, which measures global interest in certain topics entered as keywords, measured the highest rating of 100 on for the search term ChatGPT on Nov. 5, according to Finbold data. That was up from around 60 four months earlier and throughout 2023 its popularity has risen by 400%.

And on Wednesday OpenAI, which runs the platform, said it was temporarily shutting down its new registrations due to overcapacity following the success of its DevDay conference earlier this month.

"The surge in usage post DevDay has exceeded our capacity, and we want to make sure everyone has a great experience," said CEO Sam Altman in a Tweet.

The rising popularity of ChatGPT is likely to push rivals to raise their game and, according to Bank of America analysts, "lead to demand for better and faster chips in smartphones and increased replacement demand."

This could help boost ETFs that cover the ship industry, such as the SPDR S&P Semiconductor ETF (XSD  ) and, according to BofA, chip stocks such as Qualcomm (QCOM  ) and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing (TSM  ).

Indeed, Nvidia (NVDA  ) CEO Jensen Huang said on Thursday that AI would be bigger than the internet.

Earlier this year analysts at Swiss bank UBS estimated that ChatGPT already had 100 million active users a month, just three months after its launch in November 2022. This was confirmed by OpenAI at the conference.

To put this in context, it took Tik Tok nine months to achieve 100 million monthly active users, and Instagram more than two years.