Advanced Computing in the Age of AI | Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Microsoft Announces GA of Azure OpenAI Service with Plans to Add ChatGPT 

Jan. 18, 2023 -- Large language models are quickly becoming an essential platform for people to innovate, apply AI to solve big problems, and imagine what’s possible. Today, Microsoft is excited to announce the general availability of Azure OpenAI Service as part of Microsoft’s continued commitment to democratizing AI, and ongoing partnership with OpenAI.

With Azure OpenAI Service now generally available, more businesses can apply for access to the most advanced AI models in the world—including GPT-3.5, Codex, and DALL•E 2—backed by the trusted enterprise-grade capabilities and AI-optimized infrastructure of Microsoft Azure, to create cutting-edge applications. Customers will also be able to access ChatGPT—a fine-tuned version of GPT-3.5 that has been trained and runs inference on Azure AI infrastructure—through Azure OpenAI Service soon.

Azure OpenAI Service debuted in November 2021 to enable customers to tap into the power of large-scale generative AI models with the enterprise promises customers have come to expect from the Azure cloud and computing infrastructure—security, reliability, compliance, data privacy, and built-in Responsible AI capabilities.

Since then, one of the most exciting things to be seen is the breadth of use cases Azure OpenAI Service has enabled customers—from generating content that helps better match shoppers with the right purchases to summarizing customer service tickets, freeing up time for employees to focus on more critical tasks.

Customers of all sizes across industries are using Azure OpenAI Service to do more with less, improve experiences for end-users, and streamline operational efficiencies internally. From startups like Moveworks to multinational corporations like KPMG, organizations small and large are applying the capabilities of Azure OpenAI Service to advanced use cases such as customer support, customization, and gaining insights from data using search, data extraction, and classification.

“At Moveworks, we see Azure OpenAI Service as an important component of our machine learning architecture," said Vaibhav Nivargi, CTO and founder of Moveworks. "It enables us to solve several novel use cases, such as identifying gaps in our customer’s internal knowledge bases and automatically drafting new knowledge articles based on those gaps. This saves IT and HR teams a significant amount of time and improves employee self-service. Azure OpenAI Service will also radically enhance our existing enterprise search capabilities and supercharge our analytics and data visualization offerings. Given that so much of the modern enterprise relies on language to get work done, the possibilities are endless—and we look forward to continued collaboration and partnership with Azure OpenAI Service."

Azure—the Best Place to Build AI Workloads

The general availability of Azure OpenAI Service is not only an important milestone for Microsoft customers but also for Azure itself.

Azure OpenAI Service provides businesses and developers with high-performance AI models at production scale with industry-leading uptime. This is the same production service that Microsoft uses to power its own products, including GitHub Copilot, an AI pair programmer that helps developers write better code, Power BI, which leverages GPT-3-powered natural language to automatically generate formulae and expressions, and the recently-announced Microsoft Designer, which helps creators build stunning content with natural language prompts.

All of this innovation shares a common thread: Azure’s purpose-built, AI-optimized infrastructure.

Azure is also the core computing power behind OpenAI API’s family of models for research advancement and developer production.

Azure is currently the only global public cloud that offers AI supercomputers with massive scale-up and scale-out capabilities. With a unique architecture design that combines leading GPU and networking solutions, Azure delivers best-in-class performance and scale for the most compute-intensive AI training and inference workloads. It’s the reason the world’s leading AI companies—including OpenAIMetaHugging Face, and others—continue to choose Azure to advance their AI innovation. Azure currently ranks in the top 15 of the TOP500 supercomputers worldwide and is the highest-ranked global cloud services provider today. Azure continues to be the cloud and compute power that propels large-scale AI advancements across the globe.

A Responsible Approach to AI

As an industry leader, Microsoft recognizes that any innovation in AI must be done responsibly. This becomes even more important with powerful, new technologies like generative models. Microsoft has taken an iterative approach to large models, working closely with partner OpenAI and customers to carefully assess use cases, learn, and address potential risks. Additionally, Microsoft has implemented its own guardrails for Azure OpenAI Service that align with the company's Responsible AI principles. As part of the Limited Access Framework, developers are required to apply for access, describing their intended use case or application before they are given access to the service. Content filters uniquely designed to catch abusive, hateful, and offensive content constantly monitor the input provided to the service as well as the generated content. In the event of a confirmed policy violation, we may ask the developer to take immediate action to prevent further abuse.

Microsoft is confident in the quality of the AI models being used and offered to customers today and strongly believes they will empower businesses and people to innovate in entirely new and exciting ways.

The pace of innovation in the AI community is moving at lightning speed. Microsoft and its partners are tremendously excited to be at the forefront of these advancements and look forward to helping more people benefit from them in 2023 and beyond.

Getting Started with Azure OpenAI Service


Source: Eric Boyd, Microsoft

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