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CES 2014: Qualcomm suggests cloud move is possible

Qualcomm could make a move into the cloud market in 2014 as the firm looks to explore opportunities beyond the chip market.

The smartphone chip manufacturer talked up a prospective move into the cloud market at the Consumer Electronics Show [CES] 2014 in Las Vegas with incoming CEO Steve Mollenkopf insinuating that it’s a logical next step.

“I think there's going to be a tremendous amount of growth in computing and resources dedicated to supporting the cloud,” stated Mollenkopf, according to Reuters. “We look at that as an opportunity for a company like ours.”

Its entry into the cloud sector is likely to involve providing components to go inside low-power servers and to challenge the power-hungry processors made by Intel that are currently present in many data centres worldwide. The firm didn’t announce any microserver products at CES 2014 but could do so at some point in the coming months.

Qualcomm first mentioned cloud computing back in May 2013 when senior VP and CIO Norm Fjeldheim stated that the firm has been utilising NetSuite’s cloud for its own operations. In addition, in March 2013 the firm got together with WebMD, the online medical site, to develop a cloud based system to lets customers upload biometric data from wireless home medical devices to share with healthcare providers.

The company has had a busy CES 2014 so far with two announcements regarding new system-on-a-chip [SoC] products that are designed to help it target new markets.

The Snapdragon 602 processor is specifically designed for use in vehicles and includes an 802.11ac modem, Bluetooth LE 4.0, an Adreno 320 GPU, and an integrated Gobi 9x15 multimode 3G/4G-LTE modem. It also has dual-band Wi-Fi as well as support for up to eight simultaneously streaming devices.

Meanwhile the Snapdragon 802 is aimed at capturing market share inside the next lot of smart TVs and 4K displays and the chip includes four Krait-class cores, is clocked at 1.8GHz and has an Adreno 330 GPU.