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Movidius, Google to make mobiles see

Friday, February 21 14:22:23

Movidius, a Dublin-based designer of ultra-low-power vision processor chips, has teamed up with Google to develop "intelligent, vision-based applications" for mobile devices.

As part of the agreement, Movidius' Myriad 1 vision processor platform will power Google's Project Tango - an Android-based smartphone product and development kit created by Google's Advanced Technology and Projects (ATAP) group that strives to give machines a human-like understanding of space and motion.

Myriad 1 is Movidius' first-generation Vision Processor Platform, a "new ultra-low-power, high-performance and programmable architecture of computational chips, software and development tools that enabled a range of devices to intelligently understand and contextualize their surroundings," Movidius said in a statement.

Compared with traditional processors, Movidius said, it can add 10 times the flexibility, speed and power efficiencies.

Last July, Movidius raised $16 million (E12.3 million) in a funding round led by DFJ Esprit, Atlantic Bridge and Robert Bosch Venture Capital, a German fund, as it geared up to launch its new technology and grow its business in the United States.

"Project Tango strives to give mobile devices a human-like understanding of space and motion through advanced sensor fusion and computer vision, enabling new and enhanced types of user experiences - including 3D scanning, indoor navigation and immersive gaming," Johnny Lee, technical lead at Google's advanced technology & projects team, said in a statement last night.

"Movidius has provided a key component towards enabling access to these features in a small mobile platform, with a chip designed with visual sensing and battery life in mind," Mr Lee added.

"Google has paved the future direction for smart mobile vision systems and we're excited to be working with a company that shares our vision to usher in the next wave of applications that fundamentally alter how a mobile device is used to experience the world around us," Remi El-Ouazzane, chief executive of Movidius said. "Project Tango is truly a groundbreaking platform."