Increased investor interest in AI startups – from around 10 deals in Q1'11 to over 120 in Q2'16 – can be attributed to recent advances in machine learning algorithms, particularly "deep learning" technology, a souped up version of AI. Just this week, Google integrated deep learning into its Google Translate tool; Baidu announced the launch of DeepBench, an "open source benchmarking tool for evaluating deep learning performance across different hardware platforms"; and NVIDIA introduced Xavier, a deep learning-based supercomputer for driverless cars. In the private market, Google put deep learning in the spotlight back in 2014 when it acquired 4 startups focused on this AI tech in quick succession: DeepMind, Vision Factory, Dark Blue Labs, and DNNresearch. Apple, which joined the race in 2015, most recently acquired Turi, which has developed a deep learning toolkit, among other AI-based solutions. Not to be outdone, Intel has acquired around 5 AI startups since January 2015, including deep learning startup Nervana Systems and, more recently, Movidius.
Dec-12-2016, 00:05:16 GMT