As more telecoms turn on 5G networks in 2019, consumers are eagerly awaiting firsthand, real-world 5G usage experiences. With a global presence that delivers extraordinary user experiences by offering immersive sound and imaging solutions, Xperi presented its latest audio, imaging and semiconductor solutions at Computex 2019. The company continues to expand its reach through several advanced releases and product updates based on artificial intelligence (AI) technologies. In a recent interview, Geir Skaaden, Xperi's Chief Products and Services Officer talks about three major product focuses showcased at Computex.
There are three main opportunities that leverage Xperi image AI solutions and immersive sound solutions through AI, as well as across all of its brands and technologies. The first focus is face detection technology, which is integrated into LG's 2019 flagship smartphone utilizing Fotonation Image AI technology and Time-of-Flight (ToF) sensors. This feature provides a user-friendly interface on LG phones, while also allowing for greater convenience and increased security for financial transactions.
The second opportunity centers on Xperi solutions for smart IoT devices. There is an ongoing trend around the industrial convergence between smart IoT devices and traditional mobile phones and laptops. Offering both image AI and audio solutions, Xperi is working with mobile device manufacturers and IoT solution providers to facilitate this convergence and bring new products to market.
The third opportunity focuses on the gaming sectors. Gaming PCs and smartphone devices continue to evolve with enhanced sound technologies to deliver immersive entertainment experiences. Xperi's DTS immersive audio product offerings bring compelling sound effects to powerful gaming laptops, smartphones and other gaming devices, which serve to maintain the company's strong product differentiation and leadership.
Image AI performs on leading edge of Face ID with ToF sensors
While face ID technology in smartphones is one of the more important features for enabling flagship models given the current technology hype, cost remains an issue. Structured light sensors are expensive. Through Xperi's FotoNation image AI solutions, manufacturers can access cost effective ToF sensors to maintain the same level of accuracy and allow banking services to use the system to authenticate specific transactions.
The ToF sensors represent a 34% cost advantage when compared with a structured light sensor approach, Skaaden notes. With the right level of accuracy, face detection is the most user-friendly technology enabling biometric identification. This is why Fotonation Image AI technology has been so successful in helping smartphone brands to maintain leading market positions. Investing in AI technology for more than 15 years, Fotonation has built its own AI models with specific training image data sets and image AI technology that continuously seeks to improve accuracy to desired levels.
With powerful algorithms and code optimization capability, the engineering teams of Fotonation provide tailored products for its customers by leveraging AI inferencing engines, edge computing technologies and low-power consumption embedded system design to assist powerful application processor of smartphones and achieve higher performance.
The features of FaceSafe, Xperi's facial biometrics solution, will continue to penetrate the market covering PCs, laptops and other intelligent IoT devices as use cases expand and drive increased uniqueness demands for other devices. Skaaden predicts that the upcoming CES and MWC exhibitions will show even more innovative products coming into the market.
Taiwan ecosystem partners playing important roles
DTS immersive sound product offerings bring powerful branding effects for customers by providing a new level of quality in 3D sound experiences for the everyday consumer. The enhanced user experience created by immersive sound technologies will allow new 5G smartphones and mobile devices to take full advantage of high speed data transfer rates and smarter edge technologies, Skaaden added. One of the unique benefits aligns with the trend of cloud gaming services shifting gears to boost the use of edge devices and create more immersive effects for the gaming experience. A lot of big mobile gaming titles with smart edge technologies are expected to enter the market, providing a higher level of quality in immersive sight and sound experiences.
Smart edge technology that enables better gaming experiences is made possible by lowering latency and improving accessibility at a more affordable cost to gamers. When workloads run at the edge of the network instead of being sent to cloud servers for processing, data need only travel the minimum necessary distance, reducing associated lag time and enabling more interactive and immersive experiences. Further, DTS immersive sound products have current strength in the Windows platform. As the 5G PC concept gains market adoption, this will also help android systems to access the mobile gaming segment, benefitting from the full features of immersive sound effects. Xperi is watching these opportunities closely with some potential customers continuing to apply immersive sound technology to deliver intelligent edge solutions at the gaming sector.
The new development trends for Xperi are increasingly targeted for AI related use cases. A variety of applications include functionality like detecting how many people and each individual in a room through image recognition technology, which is becoming a more interesting and hotter use case under development. Meanwhile, additional emerging solutions enable intelligent music playback features when recognizing the person in the driver seat. Such kinds of smart and fun applications that provide interactive control and overcome human interface challenges are attracting global brands and Taiwan ecosystem partners. As he talks optimistically about future business opportunities, Skaaden believes these convenience enhancing features will meaningfully benefit from Xperi image AI and immersive sound technologies.
Furthermore, the Taiwan electronic industry has a very unique market position for connecting these cooperation programs as global brands pursue OEM/ODM orders with Taiwan electronics manufacturers. This makes the Taiwan electronics industry and supply chain a leading place for global market growth. That's why Xperi invests in dedicated engineering support teams locally in Taiwan to work with Taiwan ecosystem and chipset design vendors to support its long-term strategic relationship with Taiwan partners. With 5G and AI enabled technologies evolving to play an important role in driving future growth for electronics industries, Xperi will continue its efforts to help Taiwan partners to provide a robust user experience for high consumer satisfaction and looks forward to broadening and deepening its partner relationships.
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