Elon Musk is buying Nvidia hardware even as Tesla aims to build an AI competitor.

WhatsApp Group Join Now
Telegram Group Join Now
Instagram Group Join Now

Tesla CEO Elon Musk (L) and Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang (R).


In November 2023, in an all-out meeting with employees, Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang was asked if the company would follow the lead. apple And Disney and suspended its advertising on X due to increasing levels of antisemitism and other hate speech on the platform.

X owner Elon Musk said earlier this month that he agreed with a post on the site that accused “Jewish communities” of promoting “anti-white hatred.” A number of brands—Disney and Apple among them—moved quickly to stop their ad campaigns.

Huang’s response was firm but diplomatic, according to people who eavesdropped on the meeting but asked not to be named because they were not authorized to speak to the press. He said the chipmaker had not advertised on X for a very long time and had no plans to do so. However, Huang also emphasized that Nvidia would never make public statements against another business.

Left out of Huang’s comments at the time were no details about Nvidia’s growing synergy with Musk’s business empire.

Nvidia is seeing growing demand for its graphics processing units (GPUs) and related hardware and services, pushing the company’s market cap above $2 trillion. Nvidia products, including new accelerator chips, provide computing power for generative artificial intelligence workloads, robotics, research and data center projects.

Revenue jumped 265 percent to $22.1 billion in the latest quarter, and Nvidia overtook Intel in total sales last year.

Musk has promised that his companies will develop cutting-edge AI products, and to do so requires buying a lot of Nvidia’s technology.

Their cozy relationship was on display this week at Nvidia’s annual GTC conference in San Jose, California. The event, which attracted around 16,000 attendees including celebrities such as Ashton Kutcher and Kendrick Lamar, had two sessions featuring xAI leaders, the startup Musk officially revealed in July 2023.

Christian Shigedi, co-founder of xAI and a research scientist who previously worked at Google, spoke with Nvidia’s data scientist Bojan Tungoz in a Fireside Chat. Another co-founder and research engineer at xAI, Igor Babuschkin, a veteran of OpenAI and Google, gave an overview of how Musk’s startup is using Nvidia GPUs to “train and evaluate their Grok model.” Help speed up”. .

In NVIDIA’s press release on Monday announcing the launch of its Blackwell AI chips, Musk was quoted as saying, “There’s nothing better than NVIDIA hardware for AI right now.”

Musk, who along with CEO Sam Altman and other founders helped create OpenAI before its public distribution, launched xAI to develop AI models and software products.

Meanwhile, their electric vehicle maker Tesla has spent years working on AI software to turn its cars into autonomous vehicles. It is also now developing the Tesla Bot, or Optimus, a humanoid robot.

While the bulk of Tesla’s revenue comes from its automotive business, Musk often encourages shareholders to think differently. In January he said, In a post on X, “Tesla is an AI/robotics company that many people think is a car company.”

Tesla first discussed plans to build a “Dojo supercomputer” at an AI Day presentation in August 2021. Dojo’s goal was to process and train AI models with large amounts of video and data captured by Tesla vehicles.

‘Boys, do they want a lot of GPUs’

Larry Ellison, chairman and co-founder of Oracle Corporation, speaks during the Oracle OpenWorld 2017 conference on Sunday, Oct. 1, 2017, in San Francisco, California, U.S.

David Paul Morris | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Although Musk and Huang have a long-standing relationship and are doing business together more than ever, the relationship has not always been friendly.

Last June, Musk went so far as to call Nvidia. Monopoly, in response to a post on X that accused Nvidia of “raising the price” of its GPUs, which it can do because of a supply shortage.

Musk wrote that competing chips are being developed, and that “Nvidia won’t have a monopoly on large-scale training and estimation forever.”

These remarks failed to enrage Huang.

Speaking at the New York Times’ Dell Book Summit a few months later, Huang credited Musk and OpenAI with the decision to develop Nvidia’s first AI supercomputer, the DGX system, launched in 2012.

Huang said it took about five years for Nvidia to complete and ship the supercomputer, which he personally delivered to Musk for use by OpenAI.

“Alon saw it, and he went, ‘I want one of those’ — he told me about OpenAI,” Huang said on stage. “I delivered the world’s first AI supercomputer to OpenAI that day.”

An Nvidia spokesperson declined to comment. Tesla and xAI did not respond to requests for comment.

Don’t miss these stories from CNBC PRO:

WhatsApp Group Join Now
Telegram Group Join Now
Instagram Group Join Now

Leave a Comment