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AI is the hot trend in consumer electronics, but the computational demands of advanced AI applications can benefit from specific hardware elements. This report scrutinizes the key players in AI hardware and examines how the market will evolve.


  • On-device AI will be required to meet certain apps' requirements. This will drive demand and drive innovations in the hardware market.
  • A “local cloud” AI solution powered by home assistants or smart phones will also emerge. This represents the halfway house between cloud and on device and enables cheap, lightweight devices to use AI without needing to sacrifice privacy or security,
  • There is niche but sustainable demand for closed proprietary AI hardware platforms, but these will play a key role in establishing the demand for AI

Features and Benefits

  • Evaluates the current positions of the key players in the AI hardware market; both chipset manufacturers and device manufacturers.
  • Analyzes how the market will evolve over the next five years.

Key questions answered

  • Which players have the most important roles in driving demand and innovation for AI hardware?
  • Which devices will require on device AI and which will not?

Table of contents


  • In brief
  • Ovum view
  • Recommendations

AI on the cusp of breakthrough

  • Voice assistants bring AI to the mainstream
  • Image recognition is the next wave
  • Always-on contextual AI will require advanced on-device capabilities

Chipset market landscape

  • Microsoft and Intel
  • ARM
  • Apple
  • Qualcomm
  • Huawei
  • Samsung

Market dynamics

  • Cloud versus on device
  • Key applications will determine market direction

Market outlook

  • All high-end handsets will feature on-device AI by 2020
  • Niche potential for proprietary closed AI platforms
  • Hardware manufacturers need to be proactive to software companies’ innovations, rather than reactive


  • Methodology
  • Further reading
  • Author

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