IBM launches brand new Power10 processors for high end tasks in AI & data science

Image Source: Analytics India Magazine

IBM has announced its new Power 10 processor for better performances in Big Data Analytics and AI-related tasks.

It has been 4 years since the launch of Power9. It was unveiled in the 2016 Hot Chips conference. Since then IBM has been working on this new Power10 processor. IBM and Samsung produced the first test chips as part of a $3 billion R&D investment.

In the same Hot Chips conference this year IBM has announced the new Power10. The only difference is it was a virtual conference.

The new Power10 processor is supposed to be three times more efficient than Power9 while at the same time delivering higher workload capacity and container density. The Power10 is the first processor made on the 7nm technology by IBM. Power9 was built on 14nm technology.

There will be multiple configurations of this chip. The single-chip-module offering won’t exceed 15 SMT8 cores and the dual-chip-module offering won’t exceed 30 SMT8 cores.

AI has been a key factor while developing this powerhouse. The chip includes specialized hardware to accelerate AI inference, with IBM promising big improvements in AI performance compared to the Power9 chip. Power10 is expected to perform 10 to 20 times better than its predecessor in handling tasks related to Artificial intelligence.

IBM Power10
Image Source:Editorji

IBM has focused a lot on hybrid cloud computing while developing this product. They acquired Red Hat last year in a $34 billion deal. The POWER10 chip is optimized for Red Hat’s OpenShift platform, playing into IBM’s strategy of selling its existing customers on Red Hat’s products.

The Power10 has four times as much hardware dedicated to encryption compared to the POWER9, providing significantly faster encryption performance. So an upgrade on security too.

The Power10 also has something called ‘memory inception’ which lets any Power10-based system in a cluster to share the memory with other systems.

Samsung will be the one manufacturing this processor. According to reports it’s already being sampled in multiple system offerings and will likely become available in the second half of 2021. The Power10 is open for licensing and modification by the OpenPower Foundation’s over 250 members, including Google, Nvidia, Mellanox, and Tyan.

Will IBM reach Top 3?

IBM plans to bring better and faster performances with less power consumption. That is what basically every new processor tries to do.

Intel and AMD processors are dominating the market for quite a long time now. IBM is also a top-quality brand. It is among the top 5.IBM was the no. 5 server manufacturers in the first quarter of 2020, generating nearly $900 million of revenue and claiming around 5% of the market, according to IDC. But to reach from 5th to 1st is a mammoth task and maybe the power10 could be a start to achieve this mammoth task.

This pandemic has hurt almost every company. Power10 would be out in service by end of 2021. Launch of something like this will surely raise the valuation of IBM and help in growing its revenue.


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