IBM launches AI platform watsonx

International Business Machines (IBM) has launched watsonx, an artificial intelligence (AI) and data platform, to help companies integrate AI in their business.
IBM is making a re-entry into AI business after the unsuccessful launch of IBM’s software called Watson. IBM’s Watson could learn and process human language. But Watson’s high cost at the time made it a challenge for companies to use.

IBM is trying to compete with Microsoft’s OpenAI chatbot ChatGPT, which is making AI adoption an easy tool for companies. This time, the lower cost of implementing the large language AI models means the chances of success are high, IBM CEO Arvind Krishna told Reuters ahead of the company’s annual Think conference.

“When something becomes 100 times cheaper, it really sets up an attraction that’s very, very different,” Arvind Krishna said. “The first barrier to create the model is high, but once you’ve done that, to adapt that model for a hundred or a thousand different tasks is very easy and can be done by a non-expert.”

Arvind Krishna said AI could reduce certain back office jobs at IBM in the coming years. “That doesn’t mean the total employment decreases,” he said about some media reports talking about IBM pausing hiring for thousands of jobs that AI could replace.

“That gives the ability to plow a lot more investment into value-creating activities…We hired more people than were let go because we’re hiring into areas where there is a lot more demand from our clients.”

IBM is embracing a more open ecosystem and partnering with open-source AI software development hub Hugging Face and others.

IBM said companies can use the watsonx platform to train and deploy AI models, automatically generate code using natural language and use various large language models built for different purposes such as chemical creation or climate change modeling.

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