Qualcomm invests $100 million in funding AI startups

November 29, 2018 // By Christoph Hammerschmidt
Chipmaker Qualcomm has launched the Qualcomm Ventures AI Fund to invest up to an aggregate of $100 million in startups transforming artificial intelligence. The fund will focus on startups that share the vision of on-device AI becoming more powerful and widespread, with an emphasis on those developing new technology for autonomous cars, robotics and machine learning platforms.

In a press release, the company said its goal is to make AI technology ubiquitous at the chip level by inventing, developing and commercializing it. As the AI moves toward Wireless Edge - a combination of essential on-device features and the Edge Cloud - the industry is beginning to realize the full potential of 5G.

This fund builds on more than a decade of Qualcomm’s AI research and its heritage of developing the foundational building blocks of low power processing and connectivity, which are essential for AI.

“At Qualcomm, we invent breakthrough technologies that transform how the world connects, computes, and communicates,” said Qualcomm CEO Steve Mollenkopf. “For over a decade, Qualcomm has been investing in the future of machine learning,” he pointed out, adding that the company strongly believes that intelligence is moving from the cloud to the edge.

As part of the AI Fund, Qualcomm Ventures LLC participated in a Series A funding round for AnyVision, a face, body, and object recognition startup. AnyVision’s use of on-device AI minimizes the spread of data, mitigating privacy concerns. Its data acquisition strategy, together with its proprietary algorithms, are expected to provide significant value to customers. This the first investment made by the AI fund is expected to further AnyVision’s efforts to expand into other industries and develop new AI applications that transform how the world connects, computes and communicates. The announcement was made at Qualcomm Ventures’ 5G & AI Summit in San Francisco, where influential leaders in AI convened to discuss applications of the technology in different industry verticals.


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