It’s been the month of wearable silicon – and off the back of the news of the Amazfit Verge, Huami announced that its developed the “world’s first AI-powered wearable chipset” – the Huangshan No. 1.
For the uninitiated, Huami is a Chinese hardware company, pretty much backed by Xiaomi. It’s been turning out some pretty impressive devices, including the Amazfit Bip and Amazfit Stratos, both of which have mustered decent Wareable reviews.
So what’s the big deal about this AI wearable chip? Well, Gizmochina says that the Huangshan No.1 features four core intelligence engines: namely, a cardiac biometric engine, ECG, ECG Pro and Heart Rhythm Abnormality engine. That’s clearly a pretty big claim to Apple, aping (in true Huami style) pretty much all the lead features of the Apple Watch Series 4 unveiled last week.
It’s using the RISC-V open source architecture that’s getting ARM pretty worked up at the moment, and claims a boost of 38% in performance over the ARM Cortex-M4.
So is it significant? Well, yes – the wearable tech market has been generally polarised with Apple and Fitbit dominating at one end with their all-singing, big feature devices and Xiaomi dominating at the other, putting all last year’s biometrics into packages with tiny price tags.
Now Xiaomi (via its Huami-backed venture) has the power to offer the features of the brand new Apple Watch, which it says will be launched in devices in the first half of 2019. And while having the hardware is just one ingredient, Xiaomi producing budget ECG, AFib and heart rate analytics won’t be good news for the likes of Fitbit, Garmin and the Google. If you thought the pressure from China was intense already – it’s about to get really interesting.
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