The global provider of semiconductors and a leading innovator in immersive and metaverse tech, Qualcomm, announced the ‘Snapdragon AR2 Gen 1 Platform’ at its Snapdragon Summit 2022. The company expects that the “groundbreaking” augmented reality (AR) technology delivered by the gadget will pave the way for a new generation of stylish, immersive eyewear.
The platform is designed to produce the thinnest AR glass feasible using a multi-chip distributed processing architecture and specialized IP blocks. The central processor on the AR2 occupies a 40% smaller PCB area on glass than the company’s Wireless AR Smart Viewer Reference Design, powered by the Snapdragon XR2 Platform. The platform offers 2.5x better AI performance while using 50% less power, enabling AR glasses to use less than 1W of power.
As a result, consumer and business use cases should be able to enjoy sophisticated AR experiences on glasses that a user can wear for extended periods without discomfort.
Qualcomm used a multi-chip architecture for the Snapdragon AR2 that consists of an AR processor, AR co-processor, and connectivity platform to better balance the weight and reduce the arm width on either side of the glasses.
Snapdragon AR2 offloads more complicated data processing requirements to a Snapdragon-powered smartphone, PC, or other compatible host devices while dynamically distributing the processing of latency-sensitive perception data directly on the glasses.
The AR processor supports nine concurrent cameras and is optimized for reduced motion-to-photon delay. A dedicated hardware acceleration engine that enhances user motion tracking and localization, an AI accelerator to cut down on latency for delicate input interactions like hand tracking or 6DoF, and a reprojection engine for a more comfortable experience are some of its improved perception capabilities.
The AR co-processor aggregates camera and sensor data, enables eye tracking, and supports iris authentication for foveated rendering to focus workloads only where the user is looking. It lowers the amount of energy used.
According to Qualcomm, the connectivity platform achieves a 2ms latency between the AR glasses and the smartphone or host device by using the Qualcomm FastConnect 7800 connectivity system to unlock Wi-Fi 7 technology. Additionally, incorporated FastConnect XR Software Suite 2.0 support offers greater control of XR data to reduce jitter, enhance latency, and prevent undesired interference.
Beyond the Snapdragon AR2 technology, Qualcomm emphasized the importance of providing an end-to-end solution that includes hardware, a collection of perception technologies, and the software tools needed to create immersive experiences.
“We built the Snapdragon AR2 to address the unique challenges of head-worn AR and provide industry-leading processing, AI, and connectivity that can fit inside a stylish form factor,” stated Hugo Swart, Vice President of XR Product Management at Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.
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