New AI acceleration modules enhance edge performance




Artificial intelligence (AI) chipmaker Hailo has launched its M.2 and Mini PCIe high-performance AI acceleration modules for empowering edge devices. Based on its Hailo-8 processor, the modules can be plugged into a variety of edge devices, enabling AI capabilities to be deployed in smart cities, smart retail, industry 4.0 and smart homes.

The modules enable customers to integrate high performance AI capabilities into edge devices, providing an optimized solution for accelerating a range of deep learning-based applications with high efficiency – optimizing time to market with a standard form factor.

Hailo module
The Hailo M.2 AI acceleration module        (Image: Hailo)

Hailo’s AI acceleration modules seamlessly integrate into standard frameworks, such as TensorFlow and ONNX, which are both supported by Hailo’s dataflow compiler. Customers can quickly port their neural networks (NNs) into the Hailo-8 processor.

The plug-in solutions come at a time when industries are increasingly utilizing edge devices that are both high-performing and cost-effective. For example, fanless AI edge boxes are in high demand as they allow many cameras or sensors to be connected to a single intelligent processing device in outdoor deployment. Hailo’s modules – with their Hailo-8 AI processor delivering 26 Tera-Operations Per Second (TOPS) and power efficiency of 3 TOPS/W – can be plugged into any existing edge device with the appropriate M.2 or Mini PCIe sockets, delivering performance while reducing latency and improving privacy.

A comparison between the Hailo-8 average frames per second (FPS) with competitors across multiple standard NN benchmarks (based on the latest published figures) shows that Hailo’s AI modules achieve a FPS rate 26x higher than Intel’s Myriad-X modules and 13x higher than Google’s edge TPU modules.

Hailo vs Nvidia performance comparison
A performance comparison of Hailo-8 versus Nvidia (Image: Hailo)

According to Orr Danon, CEO of Hailo, “Manufacturers across industries understand how crucial it is to integrate AI capabilities into their edge devices. Simply put, solutions without AI can no longer compete. Our new Hailo-8 M.2 and Mini PCIe modules will empower companies worldwide to create new powerful, cost-efficient, innovative AI-based products with a short time-to-market – while staying within the systems’ thermal constraints. The high efficiency and top performance of Hailo’s modules are a true gamechanger for the edge market.”

The Hailo-8 M.2 module is already integrated into the next generation of Foxconn’s BOXiedge – a 24-core miniserver that only needs 30 watts of power to run – with no redesign required for the PCB. The solution provides good energy efficiency for standalone AI inference nodes, benefiting applications including smart cities, smart retail, industry 4.0 and smart medical.

“The integration of Hailo’s M.2 AI module into our BOXiedge is revolutionizing our next-generation edge computing devices and will enable us to continue supporting our mission to create innovative, efficient, and competitive products for the electronics industry,” said Gene Liu, VP of the semiconductor subgroup at Foxconn Technology Group. “Hailo’s M.2 and Mini PCIe modules, together with the high-performance Hailo-8 AI chip, will allow many rapidly evolving industries to adopt advanced technologies in a very short time, ushering in a new generation of high performance, low power, and smarter AI-based solutions.”

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Original article: New AI acceleration modules enhance edge performance
Author: Nitin Dahad