The rumors are true - Microsoft is investing in OpenAI, the creator of ChatGPT. The exact size of the investment was not disclosed, however, Microsoft said in a blog post that it is "a multiyear, multibillion-dollar" one. Being an extension of a longstanding partnership, the new investment will enable companies to "independently commercialize the resulting advanced AI technologies."
The two companies will focus on developing supercomputing systems to accelerate OpeanAI's AI research along with strengthening Microsoft Azure’s AI infrastructure to help customers around the world build and deploy AI applications.
What is perhaps the most interesting side of the extended partnership for the end user? Of course, Microsoft's deployment of OpenAI's models across all its consumer and enterprise products. Additionally, Microsoft will be "introducing new categories of digital experiences" built on OpenAI's technology. It is highly unlikely that this will involve anything metaverse-related, as the company recently announced that it is sunsetting its social VR platform, AltspaceVR, in March 2023.
Satya Nadella, Chairman and CEO of Microsoft, said:
“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. 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.”
The partnership will also enable developers to build cutting-edge AI applications through direct access to OpenAI models backed by Azure’s capabilities and AI-optimized infrastructure and tools. Finally, Azure will power all OpenAI workloads across research, products, and API services.
This announcement comes just days after the software giant announced it would be laying off 10,000 people.