Taipei, Tuesday, November 21, 2017 20:07 (GMT+8)
partly cloudy
Taipei
23°C
Digitimes Research: FPGAs getting a foothold in deep learning inference chip market
Osiris Hu, DIGITIMES Research, Taipei [Wednesday 27 September 2017]

While Nvidia is currently a leading player in the deep learning inference chip market, powered by its GPGPU (general-purpose computing on graphics processing unit) processors, other vendors are offering FPGA-based solutions to contest for market shares.

For example, Alibaba Cloud has chosen Intel Altera Arria 10 FPGAs to power its F1 instance as well as Xilinx KU115 FPGAs for its F2 instance.

Microsoft's FPGA-based Project Catapult servers are also designed to improve its Bing search engine services and Azure cloud computing services, further highlighting increasing influence of FPGAs in the deep learning inference processor market.

While the inherent ability of an FPGA to be reconfigured and reprogrammed at any time allows FPGA-based products to be developed rapidly to shorten time to market, the use of Hardware Description Language (HDL) also enables FPGAs to accelerate deep learning inference processes and adapt to the rapid evolving of different algorithms.

Meanwhile, Google is also developing its custom ASIC chips for deep learning inference processing. Such ASIC-based solutions will be able to optimize algorithm configuration for specific tasks and also allow streamlined hardware designs and minimized chip sizes to enhance the advantage of terminal-end devices, Digitimes Research believes.

UMC
China AMOLED panel capacity expansion forecast, 2016-2020
Global notebook shipment forecast, 2017 and beyond
  • China AMOLED panel capacity expansion forecast, 2016-2020

    This Digitimes Research Special Report examines the China AMOLED industry, focusing on the expansion capacity of the makers, the current implementation plans of major smartphone vendors in the market and the technological hurdles faced by the China makers.

  • Global AP demand forecast, 2017-2020

    Digitimes Research expects global AP shipments to surpass the 1.9 billion mark in 2017, with smartphones remaining the main application. Qualcomm will be leading the market in 2017, as other players continue playing catch up and scramble for funds to invest in more diverse applications.

  • Global notebook shipment forecast, 2017 and beyond

    This Digitimes Special Report examines key factors in the notebook industry, including products, vendors and ODMs, that will affect total shipments in 2017 and through 2021.