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Arvind Sodhani: Intel Capital Targets Perceptual Computing

June 5, 2013

At Computex, Intel 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. To help realize this vision, Intel Capital, Intel's Global Investment and M&A Organization, announced a $100-million investment fund to accelerate the development of software and applications that bring these experiences to life across the spectrum of Intel architecture platforms.

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.

"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," said Arvind Sodhani, president of Intel Capital and Intel executive vice president. "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."

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 10,000 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, including:

  • An interactive gesture camera from Creative, the Senz3D which is already in the hands of developers and will be available to consumers in the third quarter of this year.
  • Leading the development and enabling the integration of 3-D depth camera technology by working with multiple OEM partners to build the technology into various Intel-based devices with targeted availability for second half of 2014.
  • The largest U.S. PC retailer, Best Buy, is assorting the Nuance Dragon Assistant on 10+ Intel Core based notebooks, Ultrabooks, and all-in-one PCs from Acer, Asus, Lenovo, and Toshiba. With Dell announced earlier this year, there are now five OEMs shipping designs to consumers during the back-to-school selling cycle.
  • Facial log-in software from Sensible Vision will ship preloaded from multiple OEMs.

"Intel and our key OEM partners are excited about integrating 3-D 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.

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