Qualcomm startup competition winners leverage AI for diverse applications

Peng Chen, DIGITIMES Asia, Taipei 0

Three winners were selected for the 2022 QITC on November 19. Credit: Qualcomm

Qualcomm held the grand finale of the 2022 Qualcomm Innovative in Taiwan Challenge (QITC) on November 19. After the final pitches, three startups were selected to be the competition winners. They all use artificial intelligence (AI) to develop innovative solutions.

According to Qualcomm, the annual startup program has been running for four years. Ten finalists that leverage AI and 5G technology participated in the incubation process for six months this year. Qualcomm said it provides the startups technical support, engineering resources for product development and the fund for applying for patents.

APrevent Medical won first place on Saturday. Founded in 2013, the company focuses on developing a speech recognition platform and a long-term implant system. According to Mark Chang, chief operating and technology officer, APrevent will launch its first solution for speech disorders, AiSpeak, in Taiwan next month.

He said most people suffering from dysarthria have experienced strokes, cerebral palsy, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). They encounter challenges in their daily lives because people often can not understand what they say.

Therefore, APrevent developed AiSpeak, a smartphone application based on machine learning. Chang said the company works with clinics and hospitals in Taiwan and the US to gather recordings of speech disorder patients and analyze them.

He added that the accuracy rate of the solution has reached 80%, while Google Assistant can only translate 10% of a patient's speech correctly because it targets users without disabilities.

Chang said APrevent will release the Mandarin version of AiSpeak first and keep working on the English one.

In addition, Vossic Technology and Moldintel won the first and second runner-ups in the competition. Vossic boasts its 5G, AI and IoT solutions for retail, industry and cold-chain. It also developed gender recognition AI technology that can be used for tilapia farming. Moldintel focuses on advanced manufacturing technologies for injection molding, using AI technology to help factories improve yield.

Sudeepto Roy, VP for engineering at Qualcomm Technology Licensing, said the startups struck him with their global presence and the human touch embedded in their solutions.

He also said since Qualcomm gives birth to many new technologies, it is natural for the company to collaborate. Moreover, it focuses on startups because they could make advanced technologies relevant to society, whether it is 5G, robotics or IoT.

According to Qualcomm, QITC has fostered 39 startups since 2019. Six of them have been invited to the Qualcomm Advantage Network to join the company's global business ecosystem.

Qualcomm said it established the Qualcomm Innovation Center, Southern Taiwan (QICST) in Kaohsiung in September. It was the company's second startup base on the island.