Technology that is significantly smaller but not weaker is something that Intel has in mind when it unveiled the Intel Quark, the latest product of its research and development. The ultra small and ultra low-power microchip is set to be the driving force behind the future of wearable devices as well as ingestible medical tools.
There is no question that smartwatches are in vogue these days. Samsung has just unveiled its Galaxy Gear smartwatch, while Google and Apple are rumored to be working on their own stab at the device category. But as with any device that is shrinking in size, there is always the problem of components that are small enough to fit and yet still have enough power to deliver the “smart” in the device.
Intel says it has just the solution with its Intel Quark microchip. Compared to its current Intel Atom chips, which power a number of low-power or low-cost mobile devices these days, the Quark is 10 times smaller, but also 10 times more powerful. This opens up the possibilities of using the chips not only in wearable devices but in ingestible electronics as well that could be used for biomedical purposes.
Intel will start producing the Quark chips later this year and would be made available by 2014. Intel won’t be bringing the chip to market, intending instead to offer the technology to its partners to enable them to develop their own devices around the Quark chip.