The Power of Nvidia’s AI Server in Opera’s Browsers

When you think of Nvidia and AI, you probably don’t envision Iceland and web browsers in the same scenario. However, Opera has recently made an extraordinary announcement. They have established their very own Nvidia DGX SuperPOD cluster located entirely in Iceland. This cluster is specifically dedicated to processing requests from the Aria AI feature in the Opera One and Opera GX browsers. The unveiling of this project took place during Opera’s Browser Day event in Oslo last week. During the event, Opera shed light on why they opted to acquire their own AI server, which would complement their existing servers used in collaboration with other partners. The DGX SuperPOD in Opera’s possession is powered by the H100, a GPU-like processor that utilizes Nvidia’s Hopper architecture.

Opera, the longstanding browser developer, introduced a generative AI component to its Opera One and GX platforms last year. Moving forward, they plan to expand the integration of Aria into various aspects of the browser experience. While some may be skeptical of further AI integration in everyday software, it is difficult for Opera to overlook the prevalent trend in the tech industry. With the ongoing emergence of AI-powered PCs, Opera feels compelled to keep up with its competitors. However, it is crucial to note that Opera’s approach distinguishes itself from others by focusing on small-scale models. These models are primarily designed to enhance browser usage and overall user experiences, rather than becoming just another ChatGPT system.

One might find the choice of Iceland as the location for Opera’s new AI server rather unusual. Despite its inconvenient accessibility, Iceland offers several advantages. One notable advantage is its abundance of low carbon energy, which is readily available. Additionally, Iceland’s climate presents optimal conditions for running large compute clusters. The cool air eliminates the need for excessive air conditioning, thereby reducing operating costs. While Iceland may not be the first choice for server locations, Opera’s strategic decision proves to be a sensible one.

Opera is not the only company incorporating AI into their browsers. Microsoft’s Edge has its own AI system called Copilot, and other players in the market, such as Brave and Arc Max, have jumped on the generative AI bandwagon. However, it’s worth mentioning that Arc Max does not have a Windows version at the moment. In Opera’s favor, they plan to open up the SuperPOD cluster to European and US researchers in the future. Although the details of this initiative have yet to be divulged, this move could give Opera an advantage in terms of public sentiment and support.

Opera’s collaboration with Nvidia and their investment in an AI server based in Iceland sets them apart from their competitors. By focusing on small-scale models to improve browser usage and user experiences, Opera aims to provide a unique value proposition. While the integration of AI in everyday software may raise some concerns, it is an unavoidable trend in the tech industry. With its strategic use of Iceland’s resources and its commitment to opening its SuperPOD cluster to researchers, Opera positions itself as a leading player in the AI-powered browser market.

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