Qualcomm's view of the future is one in which every smartphone, device and car on the road is equipped with artificial intelligence via a connected -- Qualcomm -- chipset.
The company laid out this AI-driven view of the world last week as its Qualcomm Technologies subsidiary announced acquisition of Netherlands-based deep learning company Scyfer B.V. The startup is focused on cutting-edge machine learning techniques for industries such as manufacturing, healthcare and finance.
Scyfer founder and University of Amsterdam professor Dr. Max Welling will join Qualcomm Inc. (Nasdaq: QCOM) as part of the acquisition, terms for which were not announced. He, along with the rest of the Scyfer team, will remain in Amsterdam, where Welling will continue to teach. Qualcomm has worked with the University of Amsterdam since 2012 via its joint machine learning research lab, QUVA.
Qualcomm says it's been in the AI game for a decade (see its timeline here), supporting AI use cases such as natural language processing and malware detection on smartphones, but it's looking to take its involvement further. Qualcomm Executive Vice President of Technology Matt Grob said in a blog post that the company is researching broader topics, such as AI for wireless connectivity, power management and photography.
While most companies focus on AI at the cloud level, Qualcomm's goal is to have AI processing done on each device so that it doesn’t require a network or WiFi connection, which the company says will allow for immediate response time, enhanced reliability, increased privacy protection and more efficient use of network bandwidth.
Qualcomm's latest Snapdragon chips include dedicated modules for machine learning. It also released its Snapdragon Neural Processing Engine software development kit for developers for neural network-driven user experiences in July.
— Sarah Thomas, , Director, Women in Comms