These days, companies are using cloud services to receive and process the data they gather from sensors, cameras, and services. However, the amount of data is getting so massive that sending them and managing them is becoming increasingly expansive. This is where Edge AI comes in, a combination of Edge Computing and Artificial Intelligence.
Edge AI is a system of AI-equipped chips that are on board multiple devices. These devices can be installed and set up much closer to the sources of data. Although these chips process with less processing power and maybe slower action, they can provide invaluable services in terms of receiving and processing the data.
What are the applications of Edge AI?
Object detection is one of the essential applications of Edge AI. An AI-enabled chip can be added to a camera, and the uses are endless. These systems can be used in a fast-food parlor or a restaurant to detect the number of people on the waiting list. Then, the system can calculate the probable waiting time and the amount of raw material needed for the restaurant.
Edge AI systems’ great advantage is that they are equipped with machine learning algorithms, and the more you use them, the more accurate their calculations get. What’s more, you won’t need to send the data to the remote cloud server or have a data center nearby. Everything happens on the camera system with the least amount of latency.
Edge AI, object detection applications include postal services, factories, traffic control systems, and many more. These systems are highly cost-effective; therefore, even small businesses can install and use them to optimize their services and costs.
This is another way Edge AI can save industries millions of dollars in the long run. Factories and manufacturing units usually work with machines that cost millions of dollars. The cost for these machines’ maintenance and repairs can be daunting on the business as well. Therefore, it is much more efficient to install a system to detect any potential damage before it happens.
With an Edge AI-enabled robot, camera, or computer, factories can supervise their machinery constantly and send a warning every time something is working abnormally. Additionally, the machine learning algorithm makes sure that the system issues fewer and fewer false alarms in time.
Another industry in which Edge AI can play a crucial role is the automotive industry. First and foremost, Edge AI can be essential in autonomous vehicles. These systems can use Edge AI-enabled cameras to navigate heavy traffic and avoid accidents with other cars or passersby.
Also, in electric cars, Edge AI can predict when the battery will need maintenance or changing. This preventive measure can save your vehicle from endless damages that stem from a malfunctioning battery.
Finally, Edge AI can be set with the car owner’s biometrics so that he/she can enter and start the car without a key. These systems include a face recognition camera that interacts with a Bluetooth connection on the owner’s phone. These two collaborate to detect the person approaching the vehicle, and in case it is the owner, open the door or start the engine.
Edge AI can be used in retail services as well. In this case, you can add Edge AI to various sensors that gather different types of data. This data is locally analyzed, and the necessary alarms are issued if necessary.
First and foremost, Edge AI-enabled sensors can measure the number of products in stock and manage online and offline sales simultaneously. These systems can be implemented on cloud services as well. However, Edge AI is far more affordable, and so even small businesses can use them in their warehouses.
In case the retail object is fresh produce and/or raw food, the sensors can detect the expiry date. Then, the system can automatically deploy the products in the order of their expiration. Or it can prevent the automatic sales system from sending out products that are too old or have gone bad.
These Edge AI-equipped systems also can set the room temperature and humidity according to the stuff stored in it. This way, the products can be stored as efficiently as possible. What’s more, the business can save money by preventing product loss or returns.
In supermarkets, Edge AI-equipped cameras can detect shoplifting or any other problem that customers can have. Additionally, these systems can automatically detect and take away damaged items and not fit to sell. Therefore, saving a lot of time and labor for the supermarket in the long run.
Which companies provide Edge AI platforms?
Google Coral provides companies with a complete toolkit that enables them to equip their devices with Edge AI. The toolkits that Google Coral provides are absolutely secure and can perform different tasks on various devices. These tasks include object detection, pose estimation, image segmentation, and key phrase detection.
To use the Google Carol services, you can do one of two things. First, you can use some of the pre-made models that fit your requirements. These models include image and object detection, semantic segmentation, and on-device classification. If what you need is not in the pre-made models, you can simply design your own model. To do this, you need to first develop a prototype on a sketch pad. Then, you can set the scale of your work. Google Carol will do the rest.
NVIDIA is another company that provides customers with a 2GB AI developer kit that can be used for manufacturing, education, and teaching purposes. These kits are affordable and user-friendly. Therefore, whether you are a novice developer or a professional designer, you can use the NVIDIA kits.
With the Jetson Nano™ by NVIDIA, you can equip your computer, camera, or robot with Edge AI and use it in various ways. Jetson Nano™ is an open-source platform that can work with any kind of AI model. These kits are sold for $99 per kit. However, if you are going to use them for Edge AI systems’ mass production, your price will go up to $129.
NVIDIA had total revenue of 10.92 million dollars in 2020, which experienced a 50% rise with the previous year. The stock for this company is currently $527.45 per share. This price is predicted to grow by 25% per year in the next five years.
Amazon Web Services
Amazon Web Services (AWS) DeepLens is a deep learning-enabled video camera for developers. This camera is completely programmable, and developers can add all kinds of code to it. Using these cameras, you can program your system to detect particular objects and take action based on what it sees.
What’s more, DeepLens can be integrated with other Amazon products and services to perform other tasks. For example, Amazon Rekognition can be added to DeepLens to perform advanced image analytics. Amazon SageMaker, along with DeepLans, can be used for training models.
Other than programming your devices yourself, DeepLens also comes with pre-planned models. These models are equipped with image recognition, image classification, face detection, activity detection, pose detection, and community project systems.
The DeepLens cameras are sold for $249 each; however, this price might vary according to the issue and models. Amazon Web Services had about 130 dollars of income in 2020 just by selling cloud services. On the other hand, as Edge AI services are gaining more popularity, it is predicted that some of this income will come from Edge AI services in the following years.
The stock for Amazon is currently sold for $3,110.87 per share. This price has grown by more than 100% in the last five years. Analysts believe that the stock price for Amazon will increase by 38% per year in the next five years.
How large is the global market size for Edge AI?
In 2019, the global market size for Edge AI was 0.48 billion dollars. But a lot has changed in the market since then. During the forecast period of 2020–2027, this market is expected to grow by more than 20.3 % and reach 2.2 billion dollars by 2027.
Finally, looking at all the facts, Edge AI will not replace cloud services any time soon. However, Edge AI will enable small and medium-sized businesses and industries to use machine learning and artificial intelligence in their systems too. What’s more, Edge AI makes processes and analyses faster and more efficient.