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AWS Puts Intel Habana Gaudi AI Processors to Work

December 3, 2020

At AWS re:Invent 2020, AWS CEO Andy Jassy announced EC2 instances that will leverage up to eight Habana Gaudi accelerators and deliver up to 40% better price performance than current graphics processing unit-based EC2 instances for machine learning workloads1. Gaudi accelerators are specifically designed for training deep learning models for workloads that include natural language processing, object detection and machine learning training, classification, recommendation and personalization.

David Dahan, chief executive officer at Habana Labs, an Intel Company said, “We are proud that AWS has chosen Habana Gaudi processors for its forthcoming EC2 training instances. The Habana team looks forward to our continued collaboration with AWS to deliver on a roadmap that will provide customers with continuity and advances over time.”

As the world’s leading cloud provider, AWS is used by developers around the world to train their artificial intelligence (AI) models. However, the increase in complexity of machine learning models drives up both the time and cost to train, especially as more data becomes available and developers look to refine their models. Gaudi-based EC2 instances are designed to address these needs by delivering cost efficiency and high performance, while natively supporting common frameworks such as TensorFlow and PyTorch. And using Habana’s SynapseAI Software Suite, developers will be able to easily build new or port existing training models from graphics processing units to Gaudi accelerators.

How It Fits in Intel’s AI and XPU Vision: Intel acquired Habana in 2019 to advance its AI strategy and strengthen its portfolio of AI accelerators for the cloud and data center. This includes a mix of products and technologies that power some of the most promising AI use cases in business, society and research. It also reflects the company’s shift to delivering XPUs – a mix of architectures across CPUs, GPUs, FPGAs and more to help customers and the entire ecosystem unleash the potential of data.

“Our portfolio reflects the fact that artificial intelligence is not a one-size-fits-all computing challenge,” said Remi El-Ouazzane, chief strategy officer of Intel’s Data Platforms Group. “Cloud providers today are broadly using the built-in AI performance of our Intel® Xeon® processors to tackle AI inference workloads. With Habana, we can now also help them reduce the cost of training AI models at scale, providing a compelling, competitive alternative in this high-growth market opportunity.”

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