Samsung has its hands deep into the Internet of Things pockets, and their latest chipsets may very well solidify their position as the leaders of the IoT pack. Announced at this week’s Internet of Things World Conference in San Francisco, the new family of processors can power everything from servers and smartphones to drones and wearables. The goal, according to president and chief strategy officer for Samsung Electronics Young Sohn, was to create a line of chips produced specifically for connected devices and data by leveraging the same technology used in Samsung phones and bringing it to the IoT market.
The smallest module in the line is the ARTIK 1. At roughly the size of a ladybug, Samsung claims this is the smallest IoT module currently available. This little chip is ideal for small, low-power devices like smart wearables, activity trackers and other IoT end nodes. It has a 250MHz dual-core processor with 4MB of flash memory, 9-axis motion sensor, Bluetooth Low Energy support and according to Sohn will cost “less than $10” and run for one week on a single charge. The mid-range processor, the ARTIK 5, is roughly the size of a quarter and is designed for home hubs, high-end wearables and smarter drones. This chip has a 1GHz dual-core processor, 512MB of DRAM and 4GB of flash memory in addition to Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and video encoding capabilities. The largest and most powerful processor of the three is the ARTIK 10, which is intended to be the complete system for home servers and personal clouds. This little device comes equipped with a 1.3GHz Octacore processor, 2GB of DRAM and 16GB of flash memory. The octacore processor is capable of 1080p HD video encoding and decoding and 5.1-channel surround sound. With WiFi, Bluetooth LE and ZigBee, along with local intelligence, Samsung believes this processor may eventually play a role in media servers and industrial devices alike. While no official prices have been released, Samsung was quoted as saying that the ARTIK 10 will cost “less than $100”.
All three of the chips come with an embedded secure element and software that includes a machine learning based anomaly detection system to effectively identify any patterns that could suggest a hack may be under way. Also announced at the conference was the cloud service SmartThings Open Cloud, which promises to allow any internet-connected device to intercommunicate with counterparts online. SmartThings, a home startup which was acquired by Samsung last year, hopes that the accompanying cloud service will make it easier for people to create apps and services for IoT devices. Alex Hawkinson, SmartThings CEO and co-founder, said “It’s basically a sister cloud for the Artik platform. Device makers don’t have to build their own cloud if they don’t want to.” To kick off their new line of processors, Samsung is even offering a free ARTIK development kit to registrants in their ARTIK Challenge, an initiative they hope will foster new and innovative solutions to real-world problems via the Internet of Things. In addition to the dev kit, the best entrants will receive cash or prizes, including a $90 reward to whoever can come up with a solution to California’s ongoing drought.
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