The South Korean electronics giant on Tuesday plans to reveal new chip platforms to power Internet-connected devices, ranging from wearables to smart washing machines. The new hardware will be called Artik and it comes from Samsung’s Menlo Park, Calif.-based Strategy and Innovation Center.
The group, which is led by Young Sohn, president and chief strategy officer of Samsung Electronics, has been tasked with seeking new technology, partnerships and investments in hardware, generally with a longer-term view. Sohn, who launched a $100 million US investment fund for Samsung in early 2013, has seen his role expand in recent months to include oversight over more of Samsung’s investments and its research and development. In total, Samsung has allocated more than $1 billion to fund US startups.
Sohn will introduce Artik during a keynote at the Internet of Things World conference on Tuesday in San Francisco. In a press release about the keynote, Samsung has said it “will reveal a major company milestone that will enable the new wave of groundbreaking IoT devices and services. The event will bring together industry leaders, entrepreneurs, developers and emerging companies to discuss the future of IoT and its profound implications.”
“By continuing efforts to connect devices and people to achieve greater insights, we have a huge opportunity to work with others in the industry, to tackle these real-world issues in ways that will fundamentally change people’s lives for the better,” Sohn said in the press release.
Samsung has been making a big bet on the Internet of Things, the concept of using sensors and other technologies to hook just about anything you can think of into the Internet. Analyst firm Gartner predicts the number of networked devices will surge to 26 billion units by 2020 from about 900 million in 2009, turning formerly “dumb” objects into smart ones that can communicate with each other. IDC reckons the IoT market will hit $3.04 trillion that same year. But Artik won’t just be targeted at Samsung’s own appliances. Instead, other device makers will be able to use the chips in their products.