Qualcomm to Focus on AI with New $100M Investment Fund

“In addition to other applications, Qualcomm’s new AI investment fund could help to shore up the company’s capabilities in biometric identification and authentication.”

Qualcomm to Focus on AI with New $100M Investment FundQualcomm has announced a new $100 million investment fund. Aptly called the Qualcomm Ventures AI Fund, it’s kicking off with a series-A investment in AnyVision, an Israel-based computer vision specialist that previously announced a $28 million series-A round this past summer.

In a statement announcing the new fund, Qualcomm said it “will focus on startups that share the vision of on-device AI becoming more powerful and widespread, with an emphasis on those developing new technology for autonomous cars, robotics and machine learning platforms.” The company emphasized its interest in AI systems that are able to run on-device, as well as AI systems for devices supporting 5G connectivity.

Qualcomm Ventures head Quinn Li also noted the company’s “long history of successful AI investments, including Cruise Automation, Brain Corp., Clarifai, Prospera, SenseTime and Retail Next.”

In addition to other applications, Qualcomm’s new AI investment fund could help to shore up the company’s capabilities in biometric identification and authentication. AI is playing an increasingly important in such systems, and Qualcomm’s recently announced partnership with Austrian sensor maker and VCSEL specialist Ams to develop a 3D camera system for smartphones points to its interest in technologies supporting sophisticated biometric systems such as 3D facial recognition.

The Qualcomm Ventures AI Fund was announced at the company’s 5G & AI Summit in San Francisco this week.