Sony Provides More Money And Access To AI Processors For The Creator Of The Little Raspberry Pi Computers

The maker of the Raspberry Pi computer brand has received more funding from Sony’s semiconductor division as part of a partnership to advance its artificial intelligence initiatives.

According to a statement released by the business on Wednesday, Sony Semiconductor Solutions, a division of Sony Corporation, invested an unknown sum in Raspberry Pi Ltd, the Raspberry Pi trading company.

The amount of the capital was not made public, but Eben Upton, the co-founder and CEO of Raspberry Pi, claimed that the company raised the money at the same $500 million valuation it had in its $45 million funding round from 2021.

In 2012, Upton founded Raspberry Pi with the intention of lowering the barrier to entry for young people into computers. The credit card-sized Raspberry Pi single-board processors have been used to construct everything from miniature radio-controlled submarines to high-altitude balloons.

In the beginning, the majority of Raspberry Pi’s users were instructors and hobbyists. Since then, the business has taken a more active role in the market; according to Upton of CNBC, commercial clients who embed the company’s products into factories or consumer products now account for about 70% of its sales in an average year.

The agreement extends Sony and Raspberry Pi’s current manufacturing partnership.

The agreement extends Sony and Raspberry Pi’s current manufacturing partnership. Along with the investment, a new relationship will provide Raspberry Pi users and developers access to Sony’s AITRIOS platform, enabling them to create visual sensing software utilizing AI cameras fitted with the company’s IMX500 image sensors.

This, according to Upton, will aid children in understanding computers as they are today rather than as they were many years ago.

“It’s super important we teach kids about computers as they are now, rather than [how they were] 30 years ago,” Upton told CNBC. “While Raspberry Pi looks back, on the education, we hark back to the glory years of 1980s, we’ve got to be conscious we’re not trying to make faster versions of 1980s computers.”

For machine learning applications, people have already been experimenting with Raspberry Pi devices, according to Upton, who added that the Sony relationship will enable them to do more.

It happens at a time when the AI industry is experiencing a lot of excitement. Thanks to its capacity to produce original material from straightforward user requests, such as essays and poems, ChatGPT, the well-known AI chatbot from OpenAI, has become a viral hit. According to UBS, ChatGPT has amassed over 100 million monthly users since its inception in November of last year.

The capabilities of ChatGPT have also sparked some concerns in the tech industry that AI may be getting out of control and replacing a lot of professions.

Elon Musk and a number of other tech pioneers requested a six-month embargo on the creation of AI that is more sophisticated than OpenAI’s most recent large language model, GPT-4, in an open letter published last month. They cited dangers to society. Italy has gone so far as to outright ban the service, alleging privacy concerns.

Although GPT-4 and other substantial language models, like Google’s Bard, are impressive, Upton said he believes the fear that they will produce an AI with a general intelligence comparable to humans is exaggerated.

“You can naively say GPT-3 was good, and GPT-4 looks a lot better, so GPT-8 is going to be general AI, self-aware. That is probably not an extrapolation you should make,” Upton said.

(Adapted from


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