Google launches new AI hardware development tools

Testing and developing AI applications can be a difficult process which is why Google is bolstering its range of AI products and services with three new hardware devices aimed at developers.

The devices themselves have not yet been officially announced by the company, though a web page promoting them under a new brand called Coral was discovered by Hackster.

The trio of new AI devices includes a development board for $149, a USB accelerator for $75 and a 5-megapixel camera add-on for the development board for $25.

The dev board and accelerator both utilize Google's Edge TPU chips which are tiny ASIC processors capable of running AI models more efficiently than traditional chips.

Coral platform for local AI

These new products from Google are not intended to be used to train ML algorithms but rather to help with the inference part of AI where trained models are used in the field. This is why the company has included support for its AI framework for mobile and IoT devices, TensorFlow Lite.

The USB accelerator can help boost inference on any machine running Linux while the dev board offers a number of pins and ports to help developers prototype hardware and other experimental applications.

Intel launched its own USB accelerator several years ago called the Neural Compute Stick and Google has likely followed suit as it looks to boost adoption of its own AI services.

Now that the news is out, we will likely hear more details from the company itself on its intentions with Coral and the future of this new developer-focused hardware brand.

Via The Verge

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