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Intel and Microsoft Enable AI Inference at the Edge with Intel Movidius VPU on Windows ML

Published: Mar 08,2018

Today during Windows Developer Day, Microsoft announced Windows ML, which enables developers to perform machine learning tasks in the Windows OS. Windows ML efficiently uses hardware for any given artificial intelligence (AI) workload and intelligently distributes work across multiple hardware types – now including Intel Vision Processing Units (VPU).

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The Intel Movidius Myriad X VPU is the industry’s first system-on-chip shipping with a dedicated neural compute engine for hardware acceleration of deep learning inference at the edge. This third-generation VPU from Intel is specifically designed to run deep neural networks at high speed and low power to offload specific AI tasks from burdening other hardware.

By implementing support for Intel’s VPU in Windows ML, Microsoft is providing independent software vendors the option of a dedicated deep learning inference solution, freeing up traditional hardware for other workloads or reducing the overall system power consumption without requiring custom code. The Windows ML and Intel VPU combination has the potential to enable more intelligent client applications and core OS features, such as personal assistants, enhanced biometric security, smart music, and photo search and recognition.

“Intel Movidius VPU technology will deliver increasingly sophisticated AI experiences for the hundreds of millions of Microsoft users worldwide,” said Intel’s Remi El-Ouazzane, Intel vice president and general manager of Intel Movidius. “This is just the latest example of how Intel is accelerating the promise of bringing AI from the data center to edge devices through our high-performance, low-power vision processor technology.”

“We’re excited to work closely with Intel to enable developers around the world to build engaging and magical AI-powered experiences using Windows ML and the Intel Movidius VPU,” said Kevin Gallo, corporate vice president, Windows Developer Platform, Microsoft.

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