Microsoft and OpenAI Announce Multi-Billion Dollar, Multi-Year Partnership to Accelerate AI Breakthroughs

Tech Morung

Microsoft and OpenAI have announced the third phase of their long-term partnership through a multi-year, multibillion dollar investment to accelerate AI breakthroughs and ensure that the benefits of AI are widely shared with the world. This agreement follows previous investments made in 2019 and 2021 and extends the ongoing collaboration between the two companies in AI supercomputing and research, enabling each of them to independently commercialize the resulting advanced AI technologies.

Supercomputing at Scale – Microsoft will be increasing its investments in the development and deployment of specialized supercomputing systems to accelerate OpenAI’s groundbreaking independent AI research. The company will also continue to build out Azure’s leading AI infrastructure to help customers build and deploy their AI applications on a global scale.

New AI-powered Experiences – Microsoft will be deploying OpenAI’s models across its consumer and enterprise products and introducing new categories of digital experiences built on OpenAI’s technology. This includes Microsoft’s Azure OpenAI Service, which empowers developers to build cutting-edge AI applications through direct access to OpenAI models backed by Azure’s trusted, enterprise-grade capabilities, AI-optimized infrastructure, and tools.

Exclusive Cloud Provider – As OpenAI’s exclusive cloud provider, Azure will power all OpenAI workloads across research, products, and API services.

“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,” said Satya Nadella, Chairman and CEO, Microsoft. “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 past three years of our partnership have been great,” said Sam Altman, CEO of OpenAI. “Microsoft shares our values and we are excited to continue our independent research and work toward creating advanced AI that benefits everyone.”

Since 2016, Microsoft has committed to building Azure into an AI supercomputer for the world, serving as the foundation of its vision to democratize AI as a platform. Through this initial investment and collaboration, Microsoft and OpenAI have pushed the frontier of cloud supercomputing technology, announcing their first top-5 supercomputer in 2020 and subsequently constructing multiple AI supercomputing systems at massive scale. OpenAI has used this infrastructure to train its breakthrough models, which are now deployed in Azure to power category-defining AI products like GitHub Copilot, DALL·E 2, and ChatGPT.

These innovations have captured imaginations and introduced large-scale AI as a powerful, general-purpose technology platform that the companies believe will create transformative impact at the magnitude of the personal computer, the internet, mobile devices, and the cloud.

Underpinning all of the companies’ efforts is their shared commitment to building AI systems and products that are trustworthy and safe. OpenAI’s leading research on AI Alignment and Microsoft’s Responsible AI Standard not only establish a leading and advancing framework for the safe deployment of their own AI technologies, but will also help guide the industry toward more responsible outcomes.

This new phase of partnership aims to make it easier for developers and organizations to access the benefits of AI and use it to build and run their applications. The partnership will help to democratize AI and ensure that it can be used to benefit everyone.

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