Meet MAI-1: The New AI Model by Microsoft


Microsoft is working on a new large-scale AI language model called MAI-1, which could potentially rival next-generation models from Google, Anthropic, and OpenAI, according to a report from The Information. 

Microsoft could challenge GPT-4 and Google with a new AI model: MAI-1
Microsoft could challenge GPT-4 and Google with a new AI model: MAI-1

What is MAI-1?

MAI-1 is a new large language model (LLM) being developed by Microsoft that’s reportedly as powerful as other leading LLMs including OpenAI’s GPT-4 and Google’s Gemini Ultra.

The rumor suggests it could have approximately 500 billion parameters, meaning LLM of Microsoft will be significantly larger than Microsoft’s previous open source models like Phi-3. This reportedly puts MAI-1 in a similar league to OpenAI’s GPT-4, which is rumored to have over 1 trillion parameters (in an expert mix setting) and well above smaller models like the 70 billion parameter models of Meta and Mistral. The exact purpose of the MAI-1 is not yet known and will depend on how well the model performs.

The new model is being overseen by recently hired Mustafa Suleyman – co-founder of Google DeepMind and former CEO of AI startup Inflection –  who joined Microsoft in March along with most of the startup’s employees through a deal worth $625 million. 

Microsoft has been allocating a large cluster of servers with Nvidia GPUs and compiling training data from various sources for MAI-1, according to the source. This includes text generated from OpenAI’s GPT-4, alongside public internet data.

When will MAI-1 launch?

There hasn’t been any confirmation or news about MAI-1 officially published. After the news of the project was announced, Kevin Scott, the CTO of Microsoft, noted that Microsoft’s relationship with OpenAI remains symbiotic and a key driver in helping both companies build the best AI.

Microsoft's relationship with OpenAI
Microsoft’s relationship with OpenAI

“We will continue to be on this path — building increasingly powerful supercomputer for OpenAI to train the models that will set pace for the whole field — well into the future,” Scott wrote in a LinkedIn post following The Information’s report. “There’s no end in sight to the increasing impact that our work together will have.”

Still, it’s not clear what the in-house model will look like just yet, and Microsoft didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider when asked to confirm the details. The information further informs how a preview of MAI-1 could arrive as early as the Microsoft Build conference later this month (May 23-25) if development progress is made.

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