There are several Tech Giants which are working on Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Baidu and there is only one company stands to profit from any outcome Nvidia.
GPUs are company’s biggest moneymaker, have become the industry standard for deep learning, a flavor of artificial intelligence widely being used by tech companies to build personal virtual assistants, image recognition for tagging photos and even software behind self-driving cars.
Not only Microsoft and Google almost every major tech company is partnered up with Nvidia and uses its hardware. Last month, Microsoft announced a partnership to work with Nvidia’s AI tailored DGX-1 supercomputer and Google’s recently revamped cloud services that will offer the option to run on Nvidia GPU in 2017. Facebook’s open source Big Sur Design for their server racks also relies on Nvidia’s hardware.
Nvidia’s autonomous car hardware known as PX2 powers the autopilot features of Self-Driving cars giant Tesla’s all cars. The company is also partnered with Chinese search giant Baidu to work on road mapping and self-driving systems.
The strength of the “datacenter” line item on Nvidia’s latest financial filing (pdf) in November, which covers the GPUs sold for enterprise AI, reinforces the company’s strong industry ties. Datacenter revenue grew 193% year over year, from $82 million in Q3 in the fiscal year 2016 to $240 million in Q3 fiscal year 2017. The company still makes a bulk of its revenue ($1.2 billion) from gaming graphics cards, although Miles Brundage, an AI policy research fellow at the University of Oxford, points out that independent and academic researchers do use gaming GPUs for their research.
"Gaming" might also include people using non-DGX-1 stuff like GeForce for deep learning, but not super clear what %.
— Miles Brundage (@Miles_Brundage) December 22, 2016
So Nvidia’s AI success might be even bigger than their financial records suggest.
Investors also liked Nvidia’s 2016 with the growth rate of 220% following year. Addition to its AI race, the company also confirmed in 2016 that their hardware will power the Nintendo Switch which is due out March 2017.
For desktop and laptops, the company released a new line of low-cost, high-powered gaming GPUs this past year.
At Nvidia’s European developer conference in September, CEO and co-founder Jen-Hsun Huang led his keynote presentation talking about the company’s work in artificial intelligence.
“The AI revolution, the beginning of the fourth industrial revolution; however you describe it,” Huang said, “We think something really really big is around the corner.”