Recently on 8 August, Intel Corp has claimed that they have sold artificial intelligence processor chips worth $1 billion back in 2017. It is for the first time that world’s second largest chip manufacturing company has revealed its sales from its rapidly rising computing section. This has geared up the sales of their competitors such as Nvidia Corp.
A decline in the rate of PC sales has forced Intel to rely on its sales to data centers, that provides mobile and web applications with their back end computing powers. Such applications further depend upon artificial intelligence (AI) technology for their distinct attributes like speech recognition and capturing photos.
However, researchers are of the opinion that Nvidia graphic processors are more suitable for training artificial intelligence models than the Intel graphic processors of central processing units, CPUs.
In Wall Street analysts event, which took place in Intel’s Santa Clara, California head office, Navin Shenoy, chief of Intel data center, claimed that in the recent years they have progressively improved their graphics and their CPUs are now 200 times more good at artificial intelligence training. That is how their sales boosted, and, the newly built Xeon processors brought in $1 billion back in 2017, when the company’s total sales were worth $62.8 billion.
“The step-function increase in performance led to a meaningful business impact for us,” Shenoy said while addressing the audience.
According to Naveen Rao, head of Intel’s AI solutions group, $1 billion sales estimate was calculated from the number of customers who were saying that they have bought the artificial intelligence chips and from the information regarding how much of a user’s data centre is devoted to artificial intelligence tasks.
“Honestly, it’s probably a lot higher. We left a lot on the table because we wanted to be conservative,” Rao said.
Current statistics are vital, since, Intel’s assets have fallen during the last month when they paid earnings to compensate the loss of data centre’s business, as projected by Wall Street. Intel also added that the release of their new generation chips will not be before 2020, that left concerned analysts who are dreading that there is a chance that they will lose their data center share to Advanced Micro Devices Inc.
“Intel must be very confident in its (artificial intelligence) roadmap and future performance given it committed to a revenue number, as analysts will ask them every quarter about it,” Patrick Moorhead said, an analyst and ex-chip executive of Moor Insights & Strategy company. He further added that $1 billion artificial intelligence chip sales figure was not an exact estimate because only CPUs were considered in the calculations; no other Intel products were included.