AMD acquires Silo AI for $665M, Captions raises $60M, new AI video tools

AI Video & Visuals

AMD is acquiring Finnish AI startup Silo AI for $665 million. Silo AI is Europe's largest private AI research lab, with clients including Allianz, Unilever, and Rolls-Royce. CEO Peter Serlin will continue to lead his team within AMD's AI group. The acquisition aims to strengthen AMD's AI model and software development and make it a stronger competitor to Nvidia in the AI ​​hardware market. Led by CEO Lisa Su, AMD is expanding its AI offerings with the MI300 accelerator and expects $4 billion in sales this year. While its stock price has lagged behind Nvidia and the semiconductor index in gains, AMD's market capitalization is near an all-time high of $286 billion. The move is part of AMD's strategy to grab a larger share of the AI ​​hardware market, which has significantly boosted Nvidia's valuation.

AI video startup Captions raises $60 million. The investment values ​​the company at $500 million and brings its total funding to $100 million. The New York-based team has grown from 15 to 60 people over the past year, and more than 10 million creators around the world use the app to produce 3 million videos per month. The platform offers photorealistic avatars and text-to-speech tools with script generation to simplify video production for non-experts. Captions also offers subtitling and dubbing translation in 28 languages. The startup integrates large-scale language models from OpenAI and Anthropic, and voice cloning from ElevenLabs. The round was led by Index Ventures, with participation from existing and new investors including Kleiner Perkins, Andreessen Horowitz, Sequoia Capital, Adobe Ventures, HubSpot Ventures, and actor Jared Leto.

The Martian emerges from stealth, scoring $9 million for glitch-free, Hollywood-quality AI-generated content. A UK startup co-founded by autonomous vehicle industry veterans has launched its Hollywood-grade Gen-AI text video platform, which generates cinema-quality visuals and editable effects to address the limitations of current text video tools. Odyssey's team includes AI researchers from leading tech companies and artists who have worked on features such as: Sand Dunes and the avengers. Investors include Google Ventures and DeepMind's Jeff Dean.

Apple is doing well with AI, but Siri is still a year away. Apple expects iPhone 16 shipments to be about 10% higher than the 81 million iPhone 15 sales due to interest in advanced AI features. However, Bloomberg's Mark Gurman reported rumors that it will be next spring before Siri can handle complex tasks such as controlling other apps. Apple is gradually introducing new features, but how hard can Siri be? It's been 12 years and she can't wake up.

Samsung is incorporating AI into its new Galaxy smartphones. The Galaxy Z Flip 6 and Galaxy Z Fold 6 were unveiled at Samsung Unpacked this week. They come equipped with new AI features to enhance productivity, creativity and communication, including Note Assist, which translates, summarizes and auto-formats notes, PDF overlay translation and the Composer feature on the Samsung keyboard with text generation suggestions. The AI-powered ProVisual Engine optimizes photo quality, while Portrait Studio offers creative styles like 3D cartoons. Auto Zoom on Galaxy Z Flip 6 refines the framing of FlexCam photos. Plus, Google Gemini integration provides an intelligent AI assistant that can be accessed with a swipe or voice command.

Musk said the next Neuralink brain implants will be available soon, despite issues with the first patient. Elon Musk's Neuralink plans to implant a second patient within a week, despite problems in the first trial. Neuralink's brain-computer interface is intended to help patients with paralysis. The first implant, made this winter, had some of the threads retracted from the brain, leaving it only 15% functional, but the patient can still watch videos, read, and play games. To address these issues, Neuralink is making modifications, such as sculpting the surface of the skull and inserting the threads deeper. Neuralink aims to implant more patients this year, but none of its BCIs, including Neuralink's, have been approved by the FDA for commercialization.

Kuaishou KLING video model Like OpenAI's Sora, KLING is only available to select creators, whose videos have gone viral in China. I'm one of more than 500,000 users who signed up to beta test Kling.

DreamFlare AI launches interactive AI-generated streaming serviceThe new service combines technology and creativity to deliver interactive storytelling experiences powered by Cinematic AI.

Toonstar uses AI to create hit YouTube series Parker James' YouTube show uses AI to achieve speed, scale, and efficiency not possible across the entertainment industry.

Limp Bizkit's AI Music Video, AI Pirate Horror Fantasy, Discovered Footage from the Future, Gifts from Tokyo I watch dozens of cinematic AI shorts every week and try to highlight the best of them for my weekly column. There was just too much AI this week. It needed its own story.

Matthew Ball interviews Meta's CTO Andrew Bosworth. The July 9 blog post details recent conversations between Ball and Boz, in which Boz discusses Meta's progress in the metaverse, XR, and AI. Bosworth outlines three eras in Meta's metaverse strategy, highlighting key milestones such as the acquisition of Oculus VR, the launch of the Quest headset, and the company's significant investment in Reality Labs. He also discusses the design challenges of incorporating displays into ordinary-looking audio smartglasses. Bosworth also details Meta's plans for AI in the metaverse, which he sees as a game-changer that will accelerate progress and enable new and unexpected capabilities in consumer electronics and the metaverse.

This column, formerly called “This Week in XR,” is also a podcast. The show is hosted by author Charlie Fink, former studio executive and Red Camera co-founder Ted Silowitz, and Magic Leap founder Ronnie Abovitz. They won't be performing on July 5, but will return to their regular weekly schedule on July 12 with Aris MD co-founder and CEO Chandra Devam. You can find it on Spotify, iTunes, and YouTube.

What we're reading

Investors defy recession and pump $27.1 billion into AI startups (New York Times)

AI movies created with a single text prompt. (Eric Barmack/The Ankler)

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