SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son said Wednesday that his company's acquisition of ARM Holdings is just the beginning of an explosion in demand for semiconductors as robots surpass humans in intelligence by the end of the century.
SoftBank bought the chip designer last year for $32 billion. He said his company projects that the chip market will grow to ship 1 trillion chips, and that ARM will design 90 to 99 percent of them.
That's not the only bet that Son has made on chips — he also invested $4 billion in Nvidia. It's all just part and parcel of singularity — a point in the near future where some scientists believe that robots will become smarter than humans. Son said he expects that in the next 80 years or so, machines will reach IQs of 10,000 (U.S. Mensa accepts IQ scores around 130.)
"That is happening in this century, for sure," Son said. "I would say there is no more debate, no more doubt. Will it be in 30 years? Twenty-five years? Thirty-five years? It's just margin of error, in my view."
The Japanese billionaire spoke from the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, where he discussed his $100 billion Vision Fund, which focuses on artificial intelligence, including robots and autonomous vehicles.