According to Bloomberg reports, Microsoft has partnered with AMD to support the chipmaker’s expansion into artificial intelligence processors. This collaboration aims to challenge Nvidia, which currently dominates the AI processor market with an 80% market share. Microsoft is providing engineering resources to support AMD’s development in this space. On the other hand, AMD is also rumored to be helping Microsoft develop its in-house Athena AI chip. However, Microsoft spokesperson Frank Shaw has denied any such involvement from AMD.
The rise of AI services like OpenAI’s ChatGPT has fueled the demand for processors capable of handling large computational workloads. Currently, Nvidia’s graphic processing units (GPUs) are the only suitable option for this purpose, making it the leader in the AI processor market. This monopoly has created a problem for companies like Microsoft, which rely on Nvidia’s expensive processors to power their various AI services on Azure Cloud.
AMD, a major rival in the gaming hardware industry, has struggled to offer an alternative to Nvidia’s CUDA libraries for large-scale machine learning deployments. However, with the booming AI industry, AMD seeks to position itself better to capitalize on this opportunity. AMD’s CEO Lisa Su has said that AI is their top strategic priority and that the company is well-positioned to create customized chips for its biggest customers to use in their AI data centers.
AMD’s upcoming Instinct MI300 data center chip is expected to be adapted for generative AI workloads. Additionally, the company is investing more resources in its development, anticipating more opportunities in the future.
Microsoft is currently facing a growing shortage of specialized GPU chips, further constrained by Nvidia’s near-monopoly on supply. Google and Amazon have already developed their own AI chips for training machine learning models, further fueling competition in this space.
This collaboration between Microsoft and AMD marks a significant step towards breaking Nvidia’s stronghold in the AI processor market. The increasing competition in this space is driving innovation and the development of new, more efficient AI chips.