Alibaba unveils new AI chip for machine learning
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd released a new artificial intelligence chip on Wednesday that specializes in machine-learning tasks, as China steps up efforts to integrate emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and 5G into its economy.
The homegrown AI inference chip, a neural processing unit (NPU) named Hanguang 800, was unveiled during Alibaba Cloud’s annual computing conference in Hangzhou, as the company strives to make its e-commerce platform more efficient using AI.
“The launch of Hanguang 800 is an important step in our pursuit of next-generation technologies, boosting computing capabilities that will drive both our current and emerging businesses while improving energy-efficiency,” Jeff Zhang, Alibaba chief technology officer and president of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence, said in a statement.
“We plan to empower our clients by providing access through our cloud business to the advanced computing made possible by the chip, anytime and anywhere.”
The chip was developed by DAMO Academy, a research institute Alibaba launched in late 2017, and T-Head, the company’s specialized semiconductor division.
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