The Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has a diverse set of offerings and is the second largest e-commerce retailer in the world trailing only rival Amazon.
Like Amazon, the company invests heavily in technology to streamline its global operations and has been one of the largest players in the development and use of artificial intelligence.
Recently at its annual tech summit, Alibaba announced the latest version of its generative AI tool called Tongyi Qianwen 2.0.
Tongyi Qianwen 2.0 will rival OpenAI’s ChatGPT and other American-built generative AI tools.
The company’s massive cloud infrastructure and home-built AI model could give it a leg up on its American rivals because it owns the entire process.
Big Tech companies like Microsoft and Amazon have settled on a strategy of partnering with AI firms like OpenAI and Antropic to provide their generative AI models.
They trade investment dollars and provide processing powering through their massive AI data centers.
Alibaba is offering its AI to companies to create closed models based on learnings from internal data sets.
This addresses one of the main concerns of CIOs related to the use of generative AI and the use of proprietary information that, if uploaded to the public versions of tools like ChatGPT, puts that data at risk for use by rivals.
This private use type of AI by Alibaba mirrors similar approaches being taken by Microsoft through its Azure GPT Copilot and Amazon’s Bedrock.
This announcement highlights the growing war between the growing list of foundational models that can be used to power many internal use cases within corporations.
It also highlights China’s desire to create home-grown technology to lessen its reliance on American-built technology.