AI war heats up: Tech giants vie for dominance

Microsoft has entered the fray with the announcement of a new category called Copilot+ PCs.
Representative Image
Representative Image

NEW DELHI: Artificial intelligence (AI) has become the hottest trend in the tech world, with every major tech giant scrambling to offer its own innovative solutions. Last week, Google unveiled its latest model, the Gemini 1.5 Pro. This powerful AI is capable of summarising conversations, captioning images and videos, and extracting data from even the largest documents. A few days ago, OpenAI also launched a new AI model and desktop version of ChatGPT. This new model, dubbed GPT-4.0, boasts of processing speeds twice as fast as its predecessor, GPT-4 Turbo, at half the cost.

Now, Microsoft has entered the fray with the announcement of a new category called Copilot+ PCs. The company’s 2024 Surface Pro and Surface Laptop are the first Windows PCs to be released under the Copilot+ PC platform. Currently, Qualcomm Snapdragon X Series processors are the exclusive power source for Copilot+ PCs, although other chipmakers like Intel are expected to join soon.

What is new about it?

Performance

Microsoft claims Copilot+ PCs are the fastest and most intelligent Windows PCs ever made. They boast of 58% faster sustained multithreaded performance compared to the latest MacBook Air.

On-device AI

Copilot+ PCs come with powerful neural processing units (NPUs) capable of doing 40 trillion operations per second. These NPUs enable powerful AI features directly on the device, without the need to rely on the cloud.

Broader Availability

While initial models use Qualcomm Snapdragon X Series chips, Microsoft expects future Copilot+ PCs to be bundled with Intel Lunar Lake and AMD Strix chips. Additionally, manufacturers such as Acer, ASUS, Dell, HP, Lenovo, and Samsung will offer Copilot+ PCs starting June 18.

Integration with Advanced AI Models

MicMicrosoft Copilot, the company’s AI assistant, will gain support for OpenAI’s new GPT-4o model. This allows Copilot to process information combining images, text, and audio, making it more versatile.

In simpler terms, Copilot+ PCs are a new generation of Windows PCs with

significantly faster processing power, powerful built-in AI capabilities, and wider availability across different brands and chipmakers. They also offer advanced AI features through Microsoft Copilot’s integration with cutting-edge AI models.

Amazon powers Alexa with generative AI

E-commerce giant Amazon is revamping its Alexa voice assistant with generative artificial intelligence (AI) technology. This upgrade aims to make Alexa more conversational and compete more effectively with newer AI-powered chatbots from Google and OpenAI. The company is considering a monthly subscription fee to offset the costs associated with the advanced AI features. Internally, Amazon is reportedly restructuring its Alexa team. Some members are shifting focus to the company’s Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) team, suggesting a broader push towards advanced AI development. Despite potential challenges, Alexa remains a major player in the voice assistant market, with over 500 million devices sold as of 2023. This upgrade underscores the intensifying competition in the AI assistant space.

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