Nvidia pushes Microsoft aside to become world’s most valuable company

Microsoft has been dethroned from being the world’s most valuable company, as artificial intelligence-focused chipmaker Nvidia officially takes the top spot.

The switch happened after Nvidia’s share price climbed to nearly $136 at the end of the trading day on Tuesday (June 18). This price makes the company at the center of the AI boom more valuable than Microsoft.

How much is Nvidia worth?

The end-of-day share price on Tuesday means the market now values the company at $3.34tn. They also overtook Apple earlier in the month.

Founded in 1993, Nvidia is an American-based company that makes computer chips for all sorts of applications but latterly has been central in providing the chips needed for artificial intelligence (AI) software. As the rise in AI products has taken place over the last few years, so has the demand for chips.

It’s the modern embodiment of the classic adage of ‘during a gold rush, sell pickaxes’. While hundreds of start-ups have launched into the red-hot AI sector, Nvidia has confidently secured its place as the main supplier of the core components that power AI.

While the use of AI will likely continue to accelerate due to the adoption of the technology by numerous industries, competition is starting to intensify.

Microsoft, Google-owned Alphabet, Meta, and Apple are all vying to dominate the space.

How did Nvidia become the most valuable public company?

Nvidia was created by three Silicon Valley engineers who focused on the computing behind video games. They created a chip called a graphics card, otherwise known as a GPU (graphics processing unit) which helped 3D visuals come to life on the screen.

This niche direction led to huge success in the video game industry, but 2006 was the start of a turning point.

They released a programming language called CUDA which brought more possibilities to the graphics cards, enabling them to do more within general computing processes.

The chip was particularly great for machine learning and its entrance into cloud computing came at a time when data centers were popping up worldwide. It was the same year Amazon launched their cloud computing business too.

Nvidia still works within gaming today, but its other markets include professional visualization, data centers, and automotives. Its chips are in cryptocurrency mining, self-driving cars, and are used in the training of AI models.

Featured Images: Via Ideogram

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Sophie Atkinson