Intel reveals low-power Clover Falls AI companion chip for EVO-certified laptops
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Intel may still be holding the laptop performance crown with the latest Tiger Lake-U CPUs, but AMD is not sitting on its hands either, as the Ryzen 5000 mobile APUs are expected to launch at CES next month. While the upcoming Tiger Lake-H processors should be Intel’s raw performance answer in this case, it seems like Team Blue is also looking to combat AMD with more platform-level enhancements. One of the major advantages Intel currently has over AMD is the platform-wide Thunderbolt connectivity, and Intel is now introducing another advantage with the “Clover Falls” AI companion chip that will be available only for EVO-certified laptops.
According to Intel’s presentation blog post, this new chip is officially called the Intel Visual Sensing Controller and its main purpose is to help “make PCs more smart and secure through the power of Intel artificial intelligence.” More to the point, this chip is supposed to bring “new low-power capabilities to the PC and help it sense and adapt to its surroundings.” Intel gives as example the situation where the chip automatically adjusts the display brightness when detecting the user’s presence. That’s about all the info we get from this presentation, unfortunately.
PCWorld offers a few more details. Apparently, the AI chip can work in conjunction with any camera sensor and it can perform some low-power semi-passive system monitoring tasks normally executed by the CPU. The companion chip would thus help preserve battery life as the CPU sees less frequent utilization.
As far as availability is concerned, the new Clover Falls chip may first be integrated with commercial PCs like business laptops, but consumer PCs should also get this feature not too long after. More details will be unveiled at CES.