Alibaba Goes Amazon Way To Develop In-House Silicon

Alibaba Group Holding Limited BABA offered a glimpse at its in-house silicon called Cloud Infrastructure Processing Units (CIPUs) at its annual summit this week, the Register reports.

Alibaba has deployed the data processing units (DPUs) in some of the Chinese giant's data centers.

"The rapid increase in data volume and scale, together with higher demand for lower latency, call for the creation of new tech infrastructure," Alibaba Cloud Intelligence President Jeff Zhang said.

Also Read: Snapshot Of Alibaba and Microsoft's New Arm-Based Cloud InstancesHere's How China Ruined Alibaba's Ambitions Of Becoming China's Amazon

Alibaba claims the accelerator can decrease network latency to 5 microseconds while improving compute performance in data-intensive AI and big-data Spark deployments by 30%.

Alibaba's CIPU appears to have evolved from its X-Dragon smartNIC to compete with Inc AMZN Amazon Web Services' Nitro cards.

SmartNICs, IPUs, and DPUs, irrespective of their names, have been a part of hyperscale and cloud data centers for years now.

They aim to accelerate input/output intensive workloads for networking, storage, and security applications by offloading them to specialized domain-specific accelerators, freeing CPU resources to run tenant workloads.

DPUs are a rage reflected by an influx of products from Intel Corp INTCMarvell Technology, Inc MRVLNvidia Corp NVDA, and Advanced Micro Devices, Inc AMD

Alibaba's efforts closely reflect Amazon's pursuit of custom silicon as a differentiator for its public cloud. AWS offers a full suite of instances using any combination of its Graviton CPUs, Nitro smartNICs, and Trainium and Inferentia AI processors.

Price Action: BABA shares closed higher by 6.81% at $105.23 on Tuesday.

Photo by Fooksou Lamimo via Wikimedia Commons

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