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[$$] The Looming Battle Over AI Chips

For some years now, there has been a tension between the world’s largest tech companies—Alphabet, Amazon.com, Facebook, Apple, Microsoft, Baidu, and Alibaba Group Holding—and the chip companies they rely on, especially Intel and Nvidia. While the giants buy massive quantities of Intel’s (INTC) microprocessors, and Nvidia’s (NVDA) graphics chips, or GPUs, to power their data centers, they are also in an arms race to have the best artificial-intelligence-based machine-learning functions. Because of this, there was always the possibility the giants might decide to buy fewer off-the-shelf parts and make their own custom chips to get an edge on one another.