Intel Wants to Light Up the IoT Market
NEW YORK CITY -- Intel Future Showcase 2014 -- Intel is prepping silicon for launch this summer to try and expand the market for the Internet of Things.
The chipmaker is readying its Edison compute module for launch "within the next couple of months," according to Tom Foldesi, senior director of the new devices group at Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC). The silicon will be aimed at professional device makers and entrepreneurs, rather than amateur builders, as Intel's current Galileo development platform is.
Foldesi said that Edison is a 500MHz dual-core, dual-thread chip module using the Atom processor with 1 GB of RAM and 4 GB of eMMC Flash memory on board. WiFi and Bluetooth wireless connectivity is supported on the silicon. The 70-pin onboard connector supports "more than 30" types of I/O connections.
Power consumption is also an important concern for wearables and other types of IoT devices. "It's similar or lower than a mobile device, roughly," he said. Intel hasn't released official stats yet, but consumption will be dependent on applications.
Foldesi expects that devices using the Edison silicon to be available "within the next few quarters." The chip module will compete with ARM Ltd. (Nasdaq: ARMHY; London: ARM) offerings, as well as the cult Raspberry Pi chip.
Intel is also basing some IoT work on the Galileo development board, which is typically aimed more at hobbyists.
The silicon powerhouse is also doing its best to stimulate interest in the market. It has been running a Make It Wearable contest, which is in its fourth round, with cash grants for the finalists.
"It's just one of the things we're doing to kickstart innovation," Foldesi said.
— Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, Light Reading