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Microsoft’s Big AI Push – The Tech Giant’s Sudden Interest In AI

Microsoft’s Big AI Push – The Tech Giant’s Sudden Interest In AI

Microsoft, which has been known for decades for its Windows platform, has been a major player when it comes to the tech industry. From its Office platform to a plethora of cloud computing services, the conglomerate has positioned itself as a force to be reckoned with. But it turns out, this is not enough for Microsoft. It has been aiming to branch out for quite some time, and with the sudden rise in Generative AI, it took the right steps to become a market leader for that too. This blog will take an in-depth look into its past decisions and plans for the future!

The OpenAI Funding

With the meteoric rise of ChatGPT and no other competitors in sight, OpenAI was enjoying a spot at the top for quite some time. With it reaching 100 million users within two months, every AI-based company was scrambling to release their products, that utilized AI to some extent.

Microsoft, on the other hand, had other plans. Instead of creating a product of their own, they decided to invest a sizeable investment of $10 billion into OpenAI. It also was revealed that they had initially invested $1 billion back in 2019.

Microsoft had a unique take on its investment. Not long before its release, ChatGPT, which was hosted on the OpenAI website, was subject to multiple downtimes, due to the high influx of users. Users were constantly voicing their displeasure and it was at that time, that Microsoft came to the start-up’s rescue. A major chunk of its investment was in the form of computational resources on its very own Azure service. This helped with eliminating downtimes altogether.

The Bing AI Revamp

Despite Google being the top search engine for 93% of the world’s internet users, Microsoft did not abandon its Bing search engine. It gave a major revamp with the introduction of Bing AI one month after investing in OpenAI. Powered by ChatGPT, Bing had access to the internet, which was significant. It was up-to-date with the latest events.

The very next month, in March, OpenAI announced GPT-4 its latest model. After three months of free public access to GPT-3, the next iteration was locked behind a $20/month paywall. Using its unique partnership with OpenAI, Microsoft upgraded its Bing Chat to GPT-4. The interesting thing: it was free of charge. Although the AI was not a dedicated chatbot, the improved model was certainly a welcome addition.

Microsoft’s AI-Based Releases In 2023

It wasn’t soon after that Microsoft started pushing for AI to be integrated into its services. This section takes a brief look into all of the different product launches and advancements that were made by the conglomerate for the fiscal year 2023-2024.

  1. March 2023

GitHub CoPilot, a tool aimed to help developers and coders, was released. It was infused with AI and would assist with coding tasks at multiple levels. From code competition to alternate solutions to a problem, it was a game-changer for the software development industry.

  1. April 2023

With a growing interest in Bing Chat and Microsoft reclaiming some lost ground from Google, in terms of market share, it started testing a Bing Chat sidebar, integrating its AI assistant right into the Edge browser.

  1. May 2023

It was in May that Microsoft pushed AI into the mainstream, with the announcement of the addition of CoPilot to its Windows operating system. CoPilot, even from the start, boasted features like app integration which were and still are a game changer.

  1. July 2023

For its annual Microsoft Inspire event, in July of 2023, AI took center stage. It showcased its recent investments, innovations, and much more. The company’s CEO repeatedly highlighted the impact of generative AI in today’s world.

  1. November 2023

Microsoft rolled out Microsoft 365 Copilot AI to enterprise customers, changing the way how documents are written and edited. This LLM AI assistant proved to be extremely helpful.

These are a few examples of the tech giant’s contributions to AI and how it has helped change our understanding of commonly used software, all within a year.

Plans For 2024 And Beyond

Microsoft is looking to make 2024 the “Year of the AI PC”. It is aiming to integrate its services even further, ensuring all users of its services benefit from the latest advancements.

Qualcomm and Intel have already teased a Windows refresh due for this year, in which AI will be in the spotlight all along. Microsoft has not acknowledged this but its plans are clear and a release like this is to be expected from the conglomerate.

Plans To Go Nuclear

Yes, you read that right! Microsoft really does have some big ideas in mind it thinks that next-generation nuclear reactors are needed to power its upcoming AI-based projects. This will also allow them to stay aligned with the company’s climate goals by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The best part: it’s already looking into hiring people who can assist with the rolling out of small modular reactors.

AI Economies Might Be Next

Microsoft wants to bring changes on a larger scale by making its AI findings and models to countries, allowing them to create AI-generated economies. It plans to do this by improving its cloud computing infrastructure.

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