Amazon Web Services (AWS) has unveiled its latest offerings in the realm of artificial intelligence (AI) with the introduction of new chips designed for the development and execution of AI applications. Additionally, AWS is set to provide access to Nvidia’s cutting-edge chips, further expanding its array of services.
In a strategic move to position itself as a competitive cloud provider, AWS is not limiting its offerings to in-house products. Similar to its diverse online retail marketplace, AWS will feature top-tier products from renowned vendors, including sought-after graphics processing units (GPUs) from leading AI chip manufacturer Nvidia.
The demand for Nvidia GPUs has surged, particularly since the launch of OpenAI’s ChatGPT chatbot, which garnered attention for its remarkable ability to summarize information and generate human-like text. This surge in demand led to a shortage of Nvidia chips as businesses rushed to incorporate similar generative AI technologies into their products.
To address this demand and compete with major cloud computing rival Microsoft, AWS has adopted a dual strategy of developing its own chips while also offering customers access to Nvidia’s latest chips. Microsoft had previously unveiled its inaugural AI chip, the Maia 100, and announced plans to incorporate Nvidia H200 GPUs into the Azure cloud.
These announcements were made at the Reinvent conference in Las Vegas, where AWS revealed its intention to provide access to Nvidia’s latest H200 AI GPUs. In addition, AWS introduced its new Trainium2 AI chip and the versatile Graviton4 processor.
The upgraded Nvidia GPU, H200, surpasses its predecessor, the H100, which OpenAI utilized to train its advanced language model, GPT-4. The high demand for these chips has prompted major companies, startups, and government agencies to seek cloud providers like AWS for chip rentals.
Nvidia claims that the H200 will deliver output nearly twice as fast as the H100.
AWS’s Trainium2 chips are specifically designed for training AI models, including those used by AI chatbots like OpenAI’s ChatGPT. Startups such as Databricks and Amazon-backed Anthropic plan to leverage the enhanced performance of Trainium2 chips, which promise four times better performance than the original model.
The Graviton4 processors, based on Arm architecture, offer energy efficiency compared to Intel or AMD chips. AWS asserts that Graviton4 provides 30% better performance than the existing Graviton3 chips, delivering improved output at a competitive price. Over 50,000 AWS customers are already utilizing Graviton chips.
As part of its expanded collaboration with Nvidia, AWS announced the operation of over 16,000 Nvidia GH200 Grace Hopper Superchips. These superchips integrate Nvidia GPUs and Arm-based general-purpose processors, providing both Nvidia’s research and development group and AWS customers with enhanced infrastructure capabilities.
Since its inception in 2006, AWS has launched more than 200 cloud products. Although not all have achieved widespread success, AWS continues to invest in the Graviton and Trainium programs, indicating a recognition of ongoing demand.
While release dates for virtual-machine instances with Nvidia H200 chips and instances relying on Trainium2 silicon were not disclosed, customers can begin testing Graviton4 virtual-machine instances with commercial availability expected in the coming months.