French Startup Mistral Releases Competitor to GPT-4, Secures Investment from Microsoft

Microsoft Corporation has announced a multi-year partnership with Mistral, a French startup worth €2 billion specializing in artificial intelligence. According to sources, Microsoft will acquire a minority stake in Mistral and make both open and commercial large language models of the startup available on their Azure platform.

Mistral’s New Language Model

As with Open AI, in which Microsoft invested over $10 billion, the partnership with Mistral involves the development and operationalisation of next-generation large language models. Correspondingly, Mistral officially introduced its new language model “Mistral Large” developed as an alternative to OpenAI’s GPT-4. The Mistral language model by default supports contextual windows of 32,000 tokens, typically more than 20,000 English words and is multilingual.

Access to the Model

Mistral Large is accessible through the company’s infrastructure located in Europe, as well as Azure AI Studio and Azure Machine Learning. In addition, the model Mistral Small, a more advanced variant of the Mistral 8x7B algorithm, is available to users.

Launch of Le Chat

Mistral has also launched a chatbot called “Le Chat”, available on The company cautions users that this is a beta version and there may be “oddities”. The service is free, and users can select between three different models- Mistral Small, Mistral Large, and a prototype known as Mistral Next. It should be noted that Le Chat does not have internet access capabilities.

The Microsoft Partnership

Previously, Mistral’s language models were open source. However, the partnership with Microsoft is likely to yield significant benefits to the French company. At present, Microsoft and Mistral have not disclosed the financial details of the partnership agreement.

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