South Korea’s startup Sapeon launches powerful new X330 AI chip
The launch of the Sapeon X330 chip is part of SK Telecom’s wider strategy to boost its own capabilities in advanced AI technologies and launch new AI services.
Sapeon, an AI chip startup and a spin-off from South Korea’s SK Group, has launched the Sapeon X330, its newest and most powerful processor. Sapeon designs AI semiconductors for data centers, which demand massive amounts of data processing. The new X330 chip is manufactured by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation (TSMC), the world’s largest contract chipmaker. Sapeon claims that the X330 has about twice the computing performance and is 1.3 times more efficient than products launched by competitors this year. The company, however, did not name the competitors specifically. The new chip is set for mass production in the first half of next year.
Why does it matter?
Sapeon is partially owned by SK Telecom, South Korea’s top telecom company, together with SK Hynix, SK Telecom’s subsidiary and the world’s No. 2 memory chipmaker. The launch of the Sapeon X330 chip is part of SK Telecom’s wider strategy to boost its own capabilities in advanced AI technologies and launch new AI services. The Sapeon X330 chip is designed for large language models (LLMs), a type of AI system that powers generative AI services like OpenAI’s ChatGPT and Google’s Bard. Sapeon joins the global race to develop AI chips, competing with larger rivals like Nvidia, AMD, and Chinese tech giant Huawei, which directly benefits from the US export ban on advanced AI chips coupled with Beijing’s strategic and massive investment in the semiconductor sector. The news comes after Nvidia unveiled the H200, a super chip designed for generative AI models, to be released next year.