Foxconn and Nvidia team up to build ‘AI factories’, CEOs say

Two large multinationals are planning to run artificial intelligence (AI) factories to train robots and self-driving cars.


Taiwan’s electronics manufacturer Foxconn and US chipmaker Nvidia said they will collaborate to build “AI factories” to promote the development of artificial intelligence (AI) technology.

The companies’ CEOs announced the joint venture together in Taipei at an annual Foxconn showcase.

“A new type of manufacturing has emerged — the production of intelligence. And the data centres that produce it are AI factories,” said NVIDIA founder and CEO Jensen Huang in a statement.

“Foxconn, the world’s largest manufacturer, has the expertise and scale to build AI factories globally. We are delighted to expand our decade-long partnership with Foxconn to accelerate the AI industrial revolution.”

Foxconn, Apple’s biggest contractor for iPhones, will use Nvidia technology, including graphic processing units and cutting-edge GH200 Superchips made for running AI models.

These AI factories or data centres will help to develop AI-powered vehicles and robotics and new generative AI services.

Nvidia said that it could speed up the training of robots and self-driving cars.

In January, Nvidia and Foxconn (officially the Hon Hai Technology Group) announced a new partnership to develop autonomous vehicle platforms. They said that Foxconn electric vehicles would be made with Nvidia hardware.

Export controls tightened in US

The AI factories announcement was unveiled as the US government tightened its export controls on advanced computer chips.

Nvidia said in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission that the new licensing requirements would impact their ability to complete the development of certain products in a “timely manner”.

The new rules could require Nvidia to “transition certain operations out of one or more of the identified countries,” the company said.

The Semiconductor Industry Association, which represents 99 per cent of the US semiconductor industry by revenue, said they were evaluating the impact of the new rules.

“We recognise the need to protect national security and believe maintaining a healthy US semiconductor industry is an essential component to achieving that goal,” the association said in a statement.

But they said: “Overly broad, unilateral controls risk harming the US semiconductor ecosystem without advancing national security as they encourage overseas customers to look elsewhere.”

Nvidia stock fell almost 5 per cent following the US announcement on Tuesday.

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2023-10-18 10:51:47

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