Alibaba group to invest $1.41bn in AI system
Alibaba Group is set to invest $1.41bn (10bn yuan) in an artificial intelligence and Internet of Things system centered around its Tmall Genie smart speaker, the company announced on Wednesday.
The investment will be used to expand content, service and hardware offerings, spanning from entertainment and shopping to health and education, surrounding the Tmall Genie ecosystem, Alibaba vice president Ku Wei said at a live-streamed conference on Wednesday.
The announcement comes a month after the company said it would be investing $28bn in its cloud business over the next three years.
Alibaba said it would be focusing on infrastructure development including servers, chips, network, and operating system. It will also deploy its proprietary technologies in its data centres "in the coming years".
Alibaba Cloud Intelligence's president Jeff Zhang said in the statement: "The COVID-19 pandemic has posed additional stress on the overall economy across sectors, but it also steers us to put more focus on the digital economy. By increasing our investment on cloud infrastructure and fundamental technologies, we hope to continue providing world-class, trusted computing resources to help businesses speed up the recovery process, and offer cloud-based intelligent solutions to support their digital transformation in the post-pandemic world."