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How the AI trend is causing a shift in buying patterns

Artificial intelligence is the technology of the moment and that does have imp0lications for the way the channel supports and sells AI according to Peter Miller, sales manager at ETB Technologies

The last 30 years have seen seismic shifts when it comes to trends in technology buying. Whether it was the emergence of the internet leading to a connected world, the proliferation of e-commerce as our primary method of buying, or the growth and eventual dominance of mobile technology, the tech we buy has been driven by these emerging trends. And it’s still happening.

Since OpenAI launched ChatGPT in November 2022 artificial intelligence has never been far from the headlines. While it often splits opinions and has, at times, been controversial, there’s no doubting the impact it has already had on the way we work. From small scale experiments to fully integrated strategic changes, AI is being used in a huge variety of ways.

Inevitably, when any significant tech trend emerges, it has an influence on what technology is most in demand and AI has been no different.  In particular, demand for GPUs has increased significantly, a factor that is reshaping the priorities and investments of companies across different sectors.

Originally designed to accelerate graphics in video games, GPUs are now at the vanguard of AI and machine learning due to their ability to process multiple calculations simultaneously. This makes them invaluable for businesses that are increasingly dependent on data analysis and machine learning to gain a competitive edge.

Changing business priorities and technology investments

The implications of this shift extend beyond hardware acquisition. The adoption of AI and sophisticated data processing tools has led businesses to reconsider their entire technology strategy. Traditional metrics of performance and efficiency are being recalibrated to account for advanced analytics and machine learning requirements. Consequently, companies are not just investing in new technologies; they are investing in future-proofing their operations.

As AI technologies mature and expand, selecting hardware that can handle increasing loads and more complex algorithms is an increasingly important consideration for businesses. Refurbished GPUs are becoming a strategic choice in this regard. While new GPUs are often seen as a default option, refurbished models provide a cost-effective alternative that allows businesses to deploy more units or allocate budget to other essential areas, such as software development or data security enhancements.

Moreover, refurbished GPUs often come from high-end servers and workstations, which were originally built to high specifications and can offer robust performance for several more years. By opting for refurbished technology, businesses can deploy advanced AI capabilities today, without the steep costs, while preparing for the increased AI demands of tomorrow.

How industry is adapting

This evolution in business priorities is already having real world implications, beyond the impact on buying patterns.  For example, we’re seeing data centres having to make significant adaptations to account for more of this kind of technology. Physical space and cooling management within these facilities are already emerging as significant considerations. As the density of servers increases to accommodate more powerful GPUs and other high-performance computing hardware, managing the physical space and the environment becomes a more intricate challenge. Efficient cooling systems are no longer a luxury but a necessity to ensure longevity and performance of the costly hardware they house.

As we look to the future, the continuous growth and innovation in the tech industry promises further shifts in how businesses approach their technology investments. With advancements in AI, the potential for quantum computing and ongoing improvements in data processing technologies, the landscape is ripe for transformation. For those of us working in the sector, staying ahead means not only keeping abreast of these technological advancements but also being agile enough to adapt to them.

The changing face of tech

As we’ve seen, changes in tech buying patterns are nothing new. Despite that, the impact of AI and machine learning does feel different, reflecting a broader shift in business operations and priorities. We’re seeing organisations taking big strategic decisions on what kind of technology they’re investing in.  This, in turn, is driving a boom in GPU sales that is having a significant impact on a range of sectors.

Refurbished options provide a gateway for more businesses to embrace these innovations, ensuring they are not left behind as the trend accelerates. It’s an exciting time and the industry response is testament to the adaptability and resilience of businesses when it comes to new challenges and new opportunities.

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