This past year, Qualcomm shipped more mobile processors than any other company, and to show off the performance of the Snapdragon processors, Raj Talluri, the Senior Vice President of Product management came onstage. Raj showed off a tablet running on the Snapdragon S4 Pro processor. On the tablet, he ran the Snapdragon Fortress Demo. The demo showed light reflection and refraction, as well as dynamic smoke rendering. The demo ran different functions on all four cores of the processor, and to show how important each one was, Raj disabled cores, which caused the framerate of the demo dropped significantly. Paul Jacobs then introduced the Snapdragon Game Pack, which has over 100 game titles for Android and Windows phone. The Snapdragon Game Command app is also available in the Google Play store, and allows users to manage their games. He also announced two new developer form factors: the S4 Mobile Development Platform, and the Dragonboard form factor.Dr Paul Jacobs speaking at Uplinq 2012
Jacobs also introduced the first Snapdragon SDK for Android. The initial functions that the SDK will enable are: gesture technology, facial processing, surround sound recording, echo cancellation, burst frame capture, and indoor location functions.
Jacobs then mentioned Qualcomm’s commitment to Windows RT, and their goal to have the thinnest, best performing Windows RT tablets with the best battery life possible. He also mentioned that they have been working very closely with Microsoft on developing the Windows RT devices, and also that all Windows Phone devices all currently run on Snapdragon processors.
Jacobs also spoke about a contest for Metro Style App developers for Windows RT. Judges will be announcing winners in mid-October of 2012. Prizes will amount to $200,000 total, and there will be winners in four different categories.
Jacobs then began discussing the importance of HTML 5, and how Qualcomm wants to provide the best possible HTML 5 experience for mobile. To show off Snapdragon’s superiority in HTML 5, they ran Sunspider and V8 benchmarks on both a Snapdragon dual core and a competitor’s quad core. The Snapdragon performed 12% better than the competitor on Sunspider and 13% better on the V8 benchmark.
Akamai Technologies was also announced as a new Qualcomm partner, and using their ability to optimize browser performance, Qualcomm will be able to offer the best possible performance for their phones. Their goal is to make the web browser one of the best app platforms for mobile.
Qualcomm also showed off their Vuforia augmented reality platform, which has been gaining traction especially with interactive education for children. However, this presentation by Jay Wright, the Senior Director of Business Development, was to show off Vuforia’s retail capabilities. Whereas before it could only read from a database of 80 items, it can now read over a million entries from a database. As of today, the new retail version of Vuforia is available as a closed (private) beta.
Next up was the CEO of Blippar, Ambarish Mitra to talk about Blippar and its relation to Vuforia. Blippar is an image recognition platform that allows users to interact with offline (physical) ads, and it allows companies to collect useful data on how those ads were interacted with, how long they were viewed, etc. This pairs perfectly with Vuforia by using their augmented reality platform in conjunction with Blippar’s image recognition.
Finally, Disney’s CTO of Imagineering, Scott Watson came onstage to talk about how Disney is utilizing mobile platforms to lead the way in entertainment technology. He mentioned ‘Otto’, a phone system for getting information about the Disney parks. He also talked about their in-park GPS based direction app, but mentioned there were issues in areas where users would be indoors and lacking GPS. The latest and last device to be shown off was the Mickey’s Magic Ears hat. The Magic Ears work in tandem with Disney light shows going on nearby, as well as networking with other nearby Magic Ears in order to display lights in a coordinated fashion. This was used recently at Disney’s new World of Color show.Rob Chandhok and Dr Paul Jacobs onstage with a pair of Mickey's Magic Ears
In conclusion, Qualcomm has some exciting technology on the horizon, with a lot of potential growth, and they seem to be teaming up with some very capable and useful partners.
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