14th April 2023
Amazon is the latest big tech company to join the generative AI race, announcing that it is releasing Amazon Bedrock, a suite of generative AI tools to help Amazon Web Service customers.
The new service, in limited preview with a few customers, will allow business that are Amazon Web Service (AWS) customers to use and develop their own generative AI tools – such as build chatbots, generate text and create and classify images based on prompts. It is essentially a cloud-based configurable alternative to ChatGPT and DALL-E. Amazon describes Bedrock as the "easiest way for customers to build and scale generative AI-based applications."
Through Bedrock, Amazon Web Services will offer customers a choice of foundational models to use. It will offer access to its own first-party large language models (LLMs) called Titan. One Titan model can generate text, the other can help with search and personalization but will also provide access to language models from start-ups AI21 and Google-backed Anthropic, and Stable Diffusion, a model for turning text into images from Stability AI. Additionally, businesses and developers can customize how the models work based on inputting their own data. Amazon stated that no customer data would be used for training the models which might in theory address privacy concerns businesses could have regarding entering sensitive data.
In a blog post, AWS vice president of data and machine learning Swami Sivasubramanian said Bedrock makes it “easy” for AWS customers to customize a model, citing an imaginary example of a content marketing manager at a leading fashion retailer who can use Bedrock to create targeted content for a new line of handbags by feeding it data so it can generate product social media posts or web copy for each product.
Amazon CEO Andy Jassy said, “Most companies want to use these large language models, but the really good ones take billions of dollars to train, and many years and most companies don’t want to go through that. So, what they want to do is they want to work off of a foundational model that’s big and great already and then have the ability to customize it for their own purposes. And that’s what Bedrock is.”
Amazon hasn’t announced formal pricing for Bedrock, but the company did emphasize that Bedrock is aimed at large customers building “enterprise-scale” AI apps.
At the same time as announcing Bedrock, Amazon has also made CodeWhisperer, its AI-powered code-generating service (like Microsoft's GitHub Copilot), free of charge to developers without any usage restrictions.
Amazon is the latest big tech giant to release generative AI capabilities after Microsoft and Google launched their own versions of AI chatbots earlier this year. Amazon is taking a slightly different approach with Bedrock, it will offer AWS customers API access to a range of AI systems to choose from, including both first-party and third-party models to use and configure their own apps.