June 23, 2024

Microsoft Introduces GPT-4o and New AI Apps

During Microsoft’s Build conference in Seattle, the tech giant introduced several new AI features, including OpenAI’s GPT-4o, a trio of small language models, and the new Cobalt 100 CPU. These announcements reflect Silicon Valley’s intensified focus on AI investments, with major players like Microsoft, Google, Amazon, Meta, and Apple racing to innovate amidst a competitive landscape.

GPT-4o UI, Source: OpenAI

OpenAI’s GPT-4o Integration

Microsoft’s standout announcement was the integration of OpenAI’s GPT-4o into its Azure AI Studio. This multimodal model, capable of processing text, audio, and video inputs, was recently unveiled by OpenAI. However, the model’s debut sparked controversy following actress Scarlett Johansson’s call for a change in the chatbot’s voice. Microsoft’s move follows Google’s introduction of various AI products at its I/O developers conference the previous week, highlighting the industry’s rapid advancements.

Expanding AI Capabilities and Accessibility

Microsoft’s latest offerings empower users to develop AI-powered programs using GPT-4o to process images, voice, and text inputs. The company also announced the upcoming availability of Copilot in Azure, enabling all customers to access this preview in the coming weeks. Additionally, Microsoft showcased its Phi-3-mini, Phi-3-medium, and Phi-3-vision small language models, designed for device usage without requiring web connectivity.

Enhancements in Microsoft 365 and Azure Virtual Machines

Microsoft 365 received copilot upgrades, including Team Copilot, designed to streamline meeting management, note-taking, chat summarization, and deadline tracking. The company also previewed Azure virtual machines running on its new Arm-based Cobalt 100 cloud CPUs, boasting a significant 40% performance improvement. Additionally, Microsoft announced plans to offer AMD’s MI300X chip for developers training and deploying AI applications.

These advancements align with Microsoft’s strategy to drive growth in its cloud business through AI applications. While Google and Amazon pursue similar strategies to expand their cloud offerings, Microsoft’s substantial investment in OpenAI has positioned it as a leader in the AI landscape. In the most recent quarter, Microsoft reported a notable contribution of 7 percentage points from AI products to its Azure and other cloud services revenue, underscoring the growing significance of AI in driving business growth.

Image: Wikimedia Commons

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