Microsoft announced the successfuldevelopment and beginning of testing of two branded new products - the Azure Cobalt 100 central processor, as well as the Azure Maia 100 AI Accelerator. The company explained why they are needed and how they are connected to the next versions of Windows.
Azure Maia 100 AI Accelerator is positioned asartificial intelligence accelerator. It is optimized for running AI algorithms and running and training generative neural networks. According to Microsoft, the new product will be used in the Copilot service in future versions of Windows. The chip is manufactured using TSMC's 5nm process technology and will operate in special racks with liquid cooling. It is currently being tested in conjunction with the GPT 3.5 Turbo AI model.
Azure Cobalt 100 server processor received 128ARM Neoverse N2 cores and a 12-channel RAM controller. The chip is designed for “general purpose computing workloads” in the Microsoft Cloud and is also designed to work with liquid cooling systems. The company is currently testing Cobalt 100 as a solution for running Microsoft Teams, and in the future they plan to integrate it into Azure services.
Microsoft says it's not ready yetpublish exact specifications and testing results of proprietary hardware. It is expected that the new chips will work not only within the company, and after some time they will go on sale - but only in the corporate market.