Qualcomm has been a major player in technology and, especially since the company was so early in seeing the potential for IoT and mobile processing, it’s been growing in leaps and bounds. Of course, that’s because the company refuses to rest on its laurels — literally ever.
Qualcomm’s long-standing and aggressive partner program is a key driver of that growth, which it uses to drive new markets, encourage innovation, and get its fingers into the most exciting new projects.
Case in point: the company announced at the Qualcomm Investor’s Day that it’s partnering with BMW Group to… ahem… drive the automaker’s automated driving systems with the Snapdragon Ride ADAS platform. Particularly, BMW will implement the Vision Perception, Vision System-on-Chip, and ADAS Central Compute System-on-Chip on its next-generation “Ultimate Driving Machines.”
BMW will use a dedicated Qualcomm computer vision processing chip to analyze data from the front, rear, and surround-view cameras and a central computing chip for communicating with cloud data centers.
“Our goal has always been to offer automakers an open, comprehensive, and transformative platform that encompasses semiconductor, software, stack, systems, and services,” said Nakul Duggal, senior vice president, and general manager, automotive at Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. He adds, “We are honored to be selected by the BMW Group to be its ADAS technology partner for computer vision stack, vision SoC, and ADAS central compute controllers, and we look forward to joint development and deployment of these products.”
BMW has been in fierce competition with Mercedes for decades to be the first in auto innovation. This is a clear move to partner with a well-established leader in automotive IoT in a move that might just put its rival on the back foot. (Although it is worth noting that Mercedes AMG has been working with Qualcomm on F1 for nearly a decade, and the larger company uses Qualcomm processors in most cars.)
Of course, that’s not all that’s going on with the ever-diversifying and forward-looking chipmaker.
Setting its sights on retail, and again leveraging its partnership strategy through its Qualcomm Smart City Accelerator Program, Qualcomm and several partners, including Zyter and Veea, are set to bring a fancy new retail experience to New York City’s Times Square and showcase the future of shopping for millions of consumers.
The plans are ambitious, to say the least. The partners plan to offer:
- Smart event venues.
- Retail spaces.
- On-site hotel.
These offerings will have:
- 5G and Wi-Fi 6 networks.
- Central control and command center with an experience management system.
- Live streaming 4K video.
- Real-time multimedia-sharing via 5G.
- Interactive augmented reality.
And honestly lots more. Like I said: ambitious.
The best thing about the project, however, is its ambition. This kind of pilot, proof-of-concept program HAS to go big or get out. Most importantly, it has to show enough revenue to impress other retail and hospitality players, so they start emulating the parts of the POC that make sense. That will drive Qualcomm and its partners right into the innovative gravity well in which they want to be. Of course, the partners are primed for success as long as the project hits a home run on its big swing.
“We are thrilled to be a contributor to one of the most visionary digitally transformed experiences of a celebrated venue with a hyper-converged network solution spanning Wi-Fi 6, IoT, edge computing with machine learning and AI, and one of the largest 5G private networks planned to date,” said Allen Salmasi, chairman and CEO at Veea.
Qualcomm has described TSX Broadway as a ground-breaking immersive building experience in the heart of Times Square, “presenting a premium platform for the world’s most imaginative and innovative tenants. The digitally transformed implementations bring the potential for numerous entertainment, performance, and interactive experiences in one of the world’s most famous visitor locations while offering a compelling on-site experience for visitors, with the ability to easily engage and share their experiences across social platforms to capture memories that last a lifetime.”