Hailo targets edge AI for auto industry with NXP partnership

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Hailo targets edge AI for auto industry with NXP partnership

AI chip specialist Hailo is teaming up with NXP Semiconductors to launch joint AI products for the automotive market.  The two will make a variety of Electronic Control Units (ECUs) which will combine NXP’s automotive processors (S32G and Layerscape) along with Hailo’s Hailo-8 AI processor. Hailo says its low energy consumption, high-performance chips are well suited to the next generations of vehicles which will require high-performance computing power to process large volumes of data from an ever-growing number of sensors.

The $35 billion automotive chip market is fragmented with the market leader Infineon first with a 13% share and NXP second with 11%, according to Statista 2020 numbers). The industry has been in the headlines recently with chip shortages slowing car production around the globe. The supply chain pinch even showed up in the GDP numbers in several economies around the world, showing just how important chips are to the automotive market.

Hailo recently raised $136mn in Series C funding, bringing the total venture funding raised to $224mn. Its Hailo-8 chip is said to be based on neural networks of the brain, and its ‘hyper-efficient’ processor is better suited to edge workloads than chips more commonly found in the data center. It only uses 2.5 W of power while it can execute as many as 26 tera-operations per second.

As well as raising money, Hailo is rapidly building out its business, partnering with Vecow in July to build fanless edge AI systems, and with Macnica in September, to distribute Hailo’s AI chips in Japan.

Indeed, Hailo announced that Taiwan-based Axiomtek would be offering hardware with its processor in Smart City applications. The new RSC100 ‘Plato’ is “Well suited for use in smart city applications, including smart surveillance, smart factory, smart agriculture, and smart transportation,” said Ken Pan, the product manager at Axiomtek.

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