Microsoft has invested billions in OpenAI, the company behind ChatGPT and Dall-E

Microsoft open Last week it will lay off 10,000 people for the entire year of 2023. But don’t think that means the company is in financial trouble. The company announced on Monday that it is investing billions of dollars in the hot AI platform Open AI.

This is Microsoft’s third investment in the company, and cements Microsoft’s partnership with one of the most exciting companies, making one of the most exciting technologies today: Generative artificial intelligence. It also shows that Microsoft is committed to making the initiative a core part of its business, as it looks to the future of technology and its place in it. And you can probably expect to see OpenAI services in your daily life as the companies that use them Merge it in their own shows.

Microsoft told Recode it did not disclose details of the deal, but Semaphore did two weeks ago that the two companies were talking about $10 billion, with Microsoft taking 75% of OpenAI’s profits until it recoup its investment, after which it would have a 49% stake in the company. The New York Times since has been confirmed $10 billion.

Through this arrangement, OpenAI manages and supports its technology through Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing platform, allowing it to scale and make it available to developers and companies looking to use AI in their own services (rather than having to build their own). Think of it as AIaaS – AI as a Service. Microsoft recently introduced its OpenAI services Widelyallowing more companies to integrate some of the most important AI technologies, including the ChatGPT word generator and DALL-E 2 image generator, into their corporate offerings.

Meanwhile, OpenAI is also getting a much-needed infusion of cash — key for a company with a lot of potential but not much To appear in terms of monetization. And Microsoft can offer its cloud customers something that Google and Amazon can’t yet compete with: one of the most advanced AI technologies, as well as one of the most buzzy. They do They have their own AI initiativessuch as Google’s DeepMind, which is It said A ChatGPT competitor came up at some point. But she is not here yet. ChatGPT is, and has become mainstream.

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, left, and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella in 2019

OpenAI CEO Sam Altman, left, and Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella in 2019 after Microsoft’s initial $1 billion investment in OpenAI.

OpenAI was founded in 2015 as a research lab, backed by Silicon Valley heavyweights including Peter Thiel, Elon Musk, and Reid Hoffman. Sam Altman, former head of startup incubator Y Combinator, is its CEO and co-founder. The company has driven its commitment to developing “safe” and “responsible” AI technologies from the very beginning; There is a long-standing fear, some have, that if artificial intelligence gets smarter, so will it Go to SkyNet We all have.

Microsoft intervened At the end of 2019 is investing $1 billion in and partnering with OpenAI to help the company continue to advance artificial general intelligence (AGI) — artificial intelligence that can also learn and perform new tasks.

“We believe it is critical that AI is deployed safely and securely and that its economic benefits are widely distributed. We are excited about how deeply Microsoft shares this vision,” Altman said at the time.

The arrangement has worked so well that Microsoft made a second investment in 2021, and now a much larger investment in 2023, demonstrating the potential Microsoft sees for this technology and the desire to be a major player in its development and deployment.

“We formed our partnership with OpenAI around a shared ambition to responsibly advance cutting-edge AI research and democratize AI as a new technology platform,” Microsoft CEO and President Satya Nadella said in a statement. “In this next phase of our partnership, developers and organizations across industries will have access to the best AI infrastructure, models and toolchain with Azure to build and run their applications.”

Microsoft has largely focused its business on enterprise software and services, but the company said in its announcement that it intends to use OpenAI in its consumer products as well. How could that look? Well, the information mentioned that Microsoft will integrate ChatGPT into its Bing search engine, allowing it to craft and write answers to questions rather than just putting together a series of links. There are certainly plenty of opportunities to integrate AI into games, and it’s a market that Xbox owner Microsoft owns a huge chunk of.

Generative artificial intelligence or artificial general intelligence is Looks great As a wonderful new frontier for technology. OpenAI is the AGI to beat. And if you’re Microsoft, your place in that future looks pretty good right now.

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