Qualcomm buys AI firm, lays out future vision

Qualcomm buys AI firm, lays out future vision

Business news |
By Rich Pell

Scyfer, a spin-off of the University of Amsterdam, specializes in developing artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning technologies for a number of industry vertical applications, such as manufacturing, healthcare, and finance. The purchase comes as Qualcomm also outlined its vision for the future: “ubiquitous on-device artificial intelligence complementing cloud AI.”

“We started fundamental research a decade ago,” says Matt Grob, executive vice president, technology, Qualcomm Incorporated, “and our current products now support many AI use cases from computer vision and natural language processing to malware detection on a variety of devices – such as smartphones and cars – and we are researching broader topics, such as AI for wireless connectivity, power management, and photography.”

The company says it’s focused on implementing AI on end devices to ensure that processing can be done with or without a network connection. The benefits of on-device AI, it says, include immediate response, enhanced reliability, increased privacy protection, and efficient use of network bandwidth.

Scyfer’s acquisition brings with it the company’s intellectual capital, including one of its founders and a renowned professor at the University of Amsterdam, Dr. Max Welling. Qualcomm Technologies and the University of Amsterdam have collaborated in the past, and in 2015 established the QUVA joint research lab, which is focused on advancing cutting-edge machine learning techniques for mobile and computer vision.

Scyfer’s machine and deep learning techniques have been used in a number of real-world projects to date. These include such applications as steel surface quality inspection, personalized 3D bone segmentation, predicting roadside assistance demand, traffic monitoring, sound recognition in healthcare, and retail revenue prediction.

Qualcomm Artificial Intelligence

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