Microsoft announced on January 23 that they were making a “multiyear, multibillion dollar investment” in OpenAI, the maker of ChatGPT. In 2019, Microsoft invested $1 billion in OpenAI, and described their agreement from this past Monday as the third stage of the partnership between these two companies. News of the investment came on the heels of Microsoft’s announcement that they plan to lay off 10,000 employees as part of a larger cost-cutting measure.
This partnership authorizes the usage of OpenAI’s tools in Microsoft products, which gives Microsoft an edge over Google. According to OpenAI, the investment enables them to continue developing AI, and Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform will continue operating as an exclusive provider for OpenAI.
According to Microsoft, by incorporating the technology behind ChatGPT into their Bing search engine, they will revolutionize internet searches. Anton Korinek, AI researcher and professor of economics at the University of Virginia explains,
“[ChatGPT] allows consumers to interact with their computer in a much more natural and conversational form than traditional search.”
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said,
“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. 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.”