Microsoft Announces New Maia 100 and Cobalt 100 Chips

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The Maia and Cobalt custom chips will be offered within Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure. Microsoft will make two brand-new chips offered next year, the tech giant announced at the Microsoft Fire up conference on Nov. 15. The Microsoft Azure Maia 100 is designed for AI workloads, and the Microsoft Cobalt 100 CPU is developed for general calculate work on Microsoft cloud. Dive to:

Custom chips built to internal specifications

Both the Maia 100 and Cobalt 100 chips are constructed internal by Microsoft, which the tech giant states enables “everything from silicon options, software application and servers to racks and cooling systems” to be tailored to the consumer work Microsoft anticipates it will see, according to a news release.

The Microsoft Azure Maia 100 AI Accelerator is enhanced for AI tasks and generative AI (Figure A). Microsoft shared their designs for the Maia 100 with OpenAI to ensure the Maia 100 would be enhanced for big language work.

Figure A:

Image of Microsoft Maia 100 chip. The Azure Maia 100 AI Accelerator. Image: Microsoft The Microsoft Cobalt 100

CPU is an Arm-based processor designed for Microsoft Cloud (Figure B). Figure B: Servers in a data center in Quincy, Washington, were the first usage case for the Cobalt 100 CPU. Image: John Brecher for Microsoft”Microsoft is building the infrastructure to support AI development, and we are reimagining every aspect of our information centers to satisfy the requirements of our consumers, “stated Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of Microsoft’s Cloud+AI Group, in the press release.” At the scale we run, it is very important for us to enhance and integrate every layer of the infrastructure stack to optimize performance, diversify our supply chain and offer customers facilities choice.”Sidekick server racks use liquid cooling To make room in data centers for the Microsoft Maia 100 AI Accelerator, Microsoft established customized server racks. These sidekick racks are broader than the normal Microsoft server format and sit beside the Microsoft Maia 100 rack. Liquid cooling fluid ranges from the partner to the Maia 100 rack and back, creating a cooler environment. The custom racks could be used with silicon from industry partners. New chips were developed for cloud workloads More must-read AI protection Microsoft expects clients to use the brand-new chips for AI and cloud computing from Microsoft’s data centers, consisting of running Microsoft Copilot or Azure OpenAI Service. The Maia 100 and Cobalt 100

chips are produced custom racks

within Microsoft information centers. SEE: Microsoft includes a Copilot sneak peek to Azure. Microsoft has been gradually dealing with producing more and more of the elements of the Microsoft Cloud itself. The silicon was the last piece of the puzzle.”We have visibility into the whole stack, and

silicon is just among the components,”said Rani Borkar, corporate vice president for Azure Hardware Systems and Facilities at Microsoft,in the

news release. Microsoft’s relationship to its silicon rivals Offering in-house chips prevents Microsoft from having to rely on rivals to run big AI work

. The Maia chip in specific could compete with NVIDIA’s AI-focused GPUs. AMD, Arm, AWS, Intel, Meta, Google, SambaNova and Qualcomm also all produce chips indicated for AI work. SEE: NVIDIA exposed brand-new

chips for AI and high-performance computing workloads. Borkar informed The Edge he doesn’t see the AI chip landscape as competition, but rather that Microsoft’s chips can be”complementary”to its collaborations, including those with other business in the AI chip space.”All the important things we develop, whether facilities or software or firmware, we can leverage whether we deploy ourchips

or those from our market partners,”stated Pat Stemen, partner program manager on the AHSI team, in journalism release.”This is an option the client gets to make, and we’re trying to supply the best set of choices for them, whether it’s for efficiency or cost or any other dimension they care about. “Microsoft is not intending on changing any existing hardware from AMD, Intel or NVIDIA. Rather, the business frames the first-party silicon choice as offering consumers more options. Microsoft prepares to produce second-generation variations of both the Maia and Cobalt chips at an unspecified time in the future. Source

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