At Computex Taipei trade-show, Intel Corp. executives detailed progress toward the company's vision to integrate human-like sensing technology into devices, ultimately delivering more natural, intuitive and immersive computing experiences. Intel Capital announced a $100-million investment fund to accelerate the development of software and apps that bring these experiences to life across the spectrum of Intel architecture platforms.
"Devices with human-like senses – the ability to see, hear and feel much like people do – has long been a subject of science fiction but is now within reach given recent innovations in compute power and camera technology. This new fund will invest in start-ups and companies enabling these experiences, helping them with the business development support, global business network and technology expertise needed to scale for worldwide use," said Arvind Sodhani, president of Intel Capital and Intel executive vice president.
The Intel Capital experiences and perceptual computing fund will invest over the next 2-3 years. Areas of software and application investment will include broader touch applications, imaging, gesture, voice and emotion sensing and biometrics, among others.
Intel announced its perceptual computing initiative at its annual Intel Developer Forum in 2012. Since then, the company's perceptual computing software developer kit (SDK) has been downloaded more than 10000 times. It had already launched the perceptual computing challenge, an early kick-off contest for developers to create innovative applications using the SDK with up to $1 million in awards.
Intel and its industry partners have also made significant progress in bringing the first perceptual computing technologies to the market for today's ultrabook systems and PCs. Creative Technology announced Senz3D motion-sensing camera; several PC makers started to integrate depth cameras into their products; software designers started to develop apps that take advantage of motion sensing.
"Intel and our key OEM partners are excited about integrating 3D depth camera technology into our next-generation platforms bringing compelling, natural and immersive experiences to life," said Kirk Skaugen, senior vice president and general manager of Intel's PC Client Group.
The Intel Capital experiences and perceptual computing fund will complement the existing Intel Capital ultrabook fund. Intel Capital has invested a significant portion of the $300-million ultrabook fund in innovative system component technologies in areas such as audio, touch, battery, display, sensor and wireless connectivity to make Intel-based computing devices thinner, lighter, more secure and responsive.