AI chip race heats up as AMD introduces rival to Nvidia technology

SAN FRANCISCO — Advanced Micro Devices has revealed a new artificial intelligence chip in its race to compete with rival chipmaker Nvidia in supplying the foundation for a boom in AI-fueled business tools.

The semiconductor company, based in Santa Clara, Calif., described its new MI300X chip as “the world’s most advanced accelerator for generative AI.” It’s expected to attract interest from big cloud providers such as Amazon or Microsoft, but AMD hasn’t specified which cloud provider might use it.

CFRA senior equity analyst Angelo Zino predicted this month that that AMD’s MI300 processor “will see significant interest from cloud providers and vie with NVIDIA’s Grace Hopper Superchip.”

“AMD’s stronger partnership with Microsoft should also drive upside, as it is reportedly cited to be developing a custom processor chip that Microsoft will use for AI workloads,” Zino wrote.

AMD CEO Lisa Su demonstrated the new technology at a showcase event in San Francisco on Tuesday.

AMD joins a growing list of technology companies trying to take advantage of a broader interest from businesses looking for new AI tools that can analyze data, help make decisions and potentially replace some tasks currently performed by human workers. Much of the interest is on “generative AI” tools such as ChatGPT that can produce works of writing on command, as well as images, computer code and other media.

Nvidia, also based in Santa Clara, has carved itself a position as the lead provider of AI chips, a term that encompasses computing hardware that’s specialized to handle workloads such as the “training” of AI systems on vast troves of data.

Nvidia, already one of the most valuable companies on the planet, joined the exclusive club of companies worth more than a trillion dollars shortly after forecasting a massive revenue boost thanks in part to chips made for use with artificial intelligence technology.