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Facebook parent Meta tightens links with open source community through expanded AWS partnership

Social media conglomerate Meta confirms AWS’s elevation to strategic cloud partner status as tech giants’ ongoing collaboration enters next phase

Social media conglomerate Meta plans to ramp up its reliance on Amazon’s public cloud services in support of its acquisition strategy, while also continuing to invest in its on-premise infrastructure.

Meta, which owns social media and messaging giants Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, is renowned for hosting its various web properties in its own hyperscale datacentre facilities, while also running part of its infrastructure in the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud.

During the course of the AWS RE:Invent partner and customer conference in Las Vegas this week, Meta confirmed it has now named Amazon as one of its key, long-term strategic cloud provider partners.

Meta confirmed this declaration means it intends to broaden its use of Amazon’s compute, storage, database and security over time to support its ongoing merger and acquisitions efforts, while also bolstering its ability to collaborate with third-party organisations.

“Meta will run third-party collaborations in AWS and use the cloud to support acquisitions of companies that are already powered by AWS,” the company said, in a statement.

The technology tie-up between the two firms will also see them collaborate, and draw from Meta’s own in-house artificial intelligence capabilities to enhance the functionality of AWS-hosted versions of the open source machine library, PyTorch.

“Meta and AWS will work together to improve the performance for customers running Pytorch on AWS and accelerate how developers build, train, deploy and operate artificial intelligence [AI] and machine learning models,” the statement continued.

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Specifically, AWS and Meta said they are turning their attention to making it easier for developers to use Pytorch to build large-scale deep learning models for natural language processing and computer vision use cases, while also ensuring it can be used to run large-scale training jobs across distributed AI accelerators.

Kathrin Renz, vice-president of business development and industries at AWS, said the two companies have been close tech collaborators for several years now, with this next phase of their working relationship set to bring plenty of benefits for the open source community.

“Meta and AWS have been expanding our collaboration over the past five years,” she said. “With this agreement, AWS will continue to help Meta support research and development, drive innovation and collaborate with third parties and the open source community at scale.”

Renz added: “Customers can rely on Meta and AWS to collaborate on Pytorch, making it easier for them to build, train and deploy deep learning models on AWS.”

Jason Kalich, vice-president of product engineering at Meta, said its expanding relationship with AWS will also allow it to increase the scale and scope of the company’s research and development work.

“The global reach and reliability of AWS will help us continue to deliver innovation experiences for the billions of people around the world that use Meta products and services for customers running Pytorch on AWS.”

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