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Amazon gives startups free credits for Anthropic AI models.

ByYasmeeta Oon

Apr 14, 2024
Amazon gives startups free credits for Anthropic AI models.

Amazon gives startups free credits for Anthropic AI models.

In an ambitious move aimed at cementing its position in the burgeoning AI sector, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has significantly expanded its support for startups. By extending its cloud credits program to include major AI models, AWS positions itself as a pivotal player in the startup ecosystem, fostering innovation and technological advancements.

Howard Wright, Vice President and Global Head of Startups at AWS, revealed in an interview with Reuters that the cloud computing giant is extending its free credits program to startups. This initiative now encompasses the use of AI models from renowned providers such as Anthropic, Meta, Mistral AI, and Cohere, marking a significant enhancement to its already substantial startup support framework.

“This is another gift that we’re making back to the startup ecosystem, in exchange for what we hope is startups continue to choose AWS as their first stop,” Wright explained. This move is not just about expanding AWS’s offerings but is also seen as a strategic investment in the future of technology and innovation.

The expansion follows Amazon’s significant $4 billion investment in Anthropic through convertible notes. This investment underscores Amazon’s commitment to AI and positions AWS as the primary cloud provider for Anthropic, leveraging AWS’s advanced Trainium and Inferentia chips for building and training AI models.

AWS’s Strategic Investments and Partnerships
Anthropic$4 billionAnthropic to use AWS as primary cloud provider
Y Combinator$500,000 in creditsCredits for AI models and Amazon’s chips for the January cohort
Startup CreditsOver $6 billionProvided to startups over the past decade for cloud and AI services

Wright emphasized that AWS’s free credit initiative would directly contribute to the revenue of popular models on Bedrock, like Anthropic, underscoring the ecosystem-building aspect of this move. “That’s part of the ecosystem building. We are unapologetic about that,” he stated, highlighting AWS’s commitment to offering a wide range of choices and ensuring security for startups.

  • Broad Support for Startups: Over the past decade, Amazon has provided more than $6 billion in credits to support startups, aiding them in leveraging cloud and AI technologies.
  • Partnership with Y Combinator: In a recent collaboration with Y Combinator, AWS is offering $500,000 in credits to the accelerator’s latest cohort, showcasing the tech giant’s commitment to fostering innovation in the AI space.
  • A Commitment to Innovation: The initiative underscores Amazon’s dedication to supporting startups navigating the costly landscape of AI development, ensuring they have the resources needed to innovate and grow.

Amazon’s latest move places it in direct competition with other cloud service giants, each vying for a piece of the AI startup pie. Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud are also offering substantial credits to startups, targeting the use of AI models and cloud services.

  • Microsoft Azure: Offers credits specifically tailored for startups using OpenAI’s models, demonstrating a strong commitment to supporting AI-driven enterprises.
  • Google Cloud: Provides credits applicable for over 130 models on Vertex AI, showcasing its vast range of AI tools and services aimed at startups.

The increasing investments by big tech firms in AI startups have not gone unnoticed by regulators. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has opened inquiries into Microsoft’s backing of OpenAI, as well as the investments by Google and Amazon in Anthropic, signaling a growing concern over the concentration of power and influence in the AI sector.

Amazon’s enhanced support for AI startups through AWS’s expanded free credits program represents a significant milestone in the tech giant’s strategy to foster innovation and growth in the AI sector. By providing startups with the necessary resources to leverage advanced AI models, Amazon not only solidifies its position as a leading cloud provider but also contributes to the development of a vibrant and diverse AI ecosystem.

As the AI landscape continues to evolve, Amazon’s initiatives, alongside those of its competitors, underscore the critical role of cloud services in enabling the next generation of AI technologies. With regulatory eyes closely monitoring these developments, the balance between fostering innovation and ensuring a competitive and fair market remains a key focus for the industry.

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Featured Image courtesy of DALL-E by ChatGPT

Yasmeeta Oon

Just a girl trying to break into the world of journalism, constantly on the hunt for the next big story to share.

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