Intel just announced a new line of tiny chips at the company’s annual Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco. Known as Quark, the open architecture SoC platform was designed specifically with wearable technology and the Internet of Things in mind according to CEO Brian Krzanich.
He noted during the presentation – his first major public appearance as Intel CEO – that smartphones and tablets are not the end-state for mobile. True enough, the next wave of computing is still being defined as wearables with sophisticated sensors and robotics are just some of the initial applications for products like Quark.
Intel said they have developed a number of concept devices and reference designs that are ready to go to their developer community and into industry. The goal isn’t necessarily for Intel to bring devices to market but rather to come up with devices that partners could use to develop their own products. Quark is fully synthesizable with an open architecture and open ecosystem, Kraznich said.
Just to put the chip into perspective, it’s about one-fifth the size of Intel’s already small Atom processor. Even more appealing is the fact that it draws only a tenth of the power. The power-saving qualities are expected to go a long way in the industrial, energy and transportation markets, we’re told.
Intel expects to ship products like smartwatches and bracelets featuring Quark sometime next year. We will no doubt hear more about this new line in the coming months and probably even more so at next year’s CES.