Intel’s NPU Acceleration Library goes open source — Meteor Lake CPUs can now run TinyLlama and other lightweight LLMs

Intel has released its open-source NPU Acceleration Library, enabling Meteor Lake AI PCs to run lightweight LLMs like TinyLlama. It’s primarily intended for developers, but ordinary users with some coding experience could use it to get their AI chatbot running on Meteor Lake.

The library is out now on GitHub, and though Intel was supposed to write up a blog post about the NPU Acceleration Library, Intel Software Architect Tony Mongkolsmai shared it early on X. He showed a demo of the software running TinyLlama 1.1B Chat on an MSI Prestige 16 AI Evo laptop equipped with a Meteor Lake CPU and asked it about the pros and cons of smartphones and flip phones. The library works on both Windows and Linux.

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Of course, since the NPU Acceleration Library is made for developers and not ordinary users, it’s not a simple task to use it for your purposes. Mongkolsmai shared the code he wrote to get his chatbot running, and it’s safe to say if you want the same thing running on your PC, you’ll either need a decent understanding of Python or to retype every line shared in the image above and hope it works on your PC.

(Image credit: Tony Mongkolsmai)

Since the NPU Acceleration Library is explicitly made for NPUs, this means that only Meteor Lake can run it at the moment. Arrow Lake and Lunar Lake CPUs due later this year should widen the field of compatible CPUs. Those upcoming CPUs deliver three times more AI performance over Meteor Lake, likely allowing for running even larger LLMs on laptop and desktop silicon.

The library is not fully featured yet and has only shipped with just under half its planned features. Most notably, it’s missing mixed precision inference that can run on the NPU itself, BFloat16 (a popular data format for AI-related workloads), and NPU-GPU heterogeneous compute, presumably allowing both processors to work on the same AI tasks. The NPU Acceleration Library is brand-new, so it’s unclear how impactful it will be, but fingers crossed that it will result in some new AI software for AI PCs.