The Shanghai Artificial Intelligence Public Computing Service Platform, which provides companies and organizations cloud computing capabilities, made its debut in order to advance the city’s innovation and digitalization.
The city-level public platform, which is the first of its kind in the country, may assist companies and organizations in using AI computing resources in a flexible and inclusive way without having to make significant infrastructure investments on their own.
According to Tang Wenkan, vice director of the Shanghai Commission of Economy and Informatization, the industry regulator, the AI computing resource is like electricity and water we use every day; it should be easy and affordable for all.
The Shanghai Supercomputer Center, which conducts computing and AI capabilities for public services, academic research, industrial development, and a variety of cloud applications including ChatGPT and metaverse, is now in charge of running the platform.
The first batch of users and partners of the platform, includes China Mobile and China Telecom. The move fits well with Shanghai’s development plan to establish a global innovation center with three strategic industries – AI, bio-medicine and chips – as well as some “future industries.”
The city unveiled a development plan for five “future industries” in November, including health, smart devices, energy, space, and new materials. The five “future industries” will produce an estimated 500 billion yuan (about $71 billion) in output by 2030.
Li Genguo, the director of the supercomputer center, said at the ceremony that the new platform has 100 petaflops (floating point operations per second) of AI computing power, which supports applications like weather forecasting, conducting academic research, and accelerating procedures for drug and vaccine development in China.
The commission claims that the new public platform has the ability to “lend” computing resources to other regions, such as West China, as needed.
The demand for AI computing has been fueled by a variety of applications, including meteorological services and the well-known AI chatbot service ChatGPT, which has 100 million users globally. China Telecom stated that the country should be well-prepared for the wave.
Reportedly, “industrial ChatGPT-like” services are being developed for enterprise clients by Chinese carriers and businesses, including China Telecom.