Qualcomm Releases Augmented Reality SDK 1.5 Beta for Android

Qualcomm has just announced the availability of QCAR SDK version 1.5 Beta 1 for Android. is now available for download. The Key features and improvements in this version of the QCAR SDK include: Video background texture access: The SDK now provides a simple and streamlined way of accessing the video background texture. Developers can now write custom special effects using powerful shaders resulting in far more exciting application experiences. Swapping datasets at runtime: If your app needs to augment more than 60 images, you can now create multiple datasets – using the web-based Target Management System (My Trackables tool)- and load the appropriate dataset at runtime. You no longer have to upgrade your app to change the target dataset, and you can now build AR experiences that work on a large number of images. Improved tracking performance: The new SDK features several enhancements that reduce jitter in the augmentations, speed […]

Midgard architecture for Embedded GPUs (Mali-T604 / Mali T658)

I’ve attended a webinar entitled “Harness the power and flexibility of the Midgard architecture for Embedded GPUs” presented Steve Steele, Product Manager at ARM Media Processing Division and sponsored by EETimes. Steve starts to talk about the current GPU architecture “Utgard” used in Mali-200, Mali-300 and Mali-400MP which allows resolutions up to 1080p and are used in many smartphones today including Samsung Galaxy S2 (Mali-400MP) which provides great graphics performance. He then explains how mobile devices are used today and what performance we may except in the future: Mobile As Main compute platform: New UI and Augmented Reality Social Networks and emails Content Creation/consumption 1 Device to multiple screen (e.g LCD screen and TV via HDMI) Evolving Processing Demand: Graphics Complexity multiplied by 25 Increase in screen size (1080p resolution support). Graphics API: Khronos OpenGL ES, Microsoft DirectX 11 Compute API: OpenCL, Renderscript Compute and Direct Compute. After this overview, […]

ARM Announces New Mali-T658 GPU

About one year ago, ARM announced the Mali-T604 GPU which has yet to be used in current products. Yet today, ARM announced an even more powerful GPU called Mali-T658 in Tokyo at Japan ARM Technical Symposium. Mali T658 is based on Midgard GPU architecture (as is Mali T604) which allows great GPGPU capabilities thanks to three types of pipeline (‘tri-pipe’) optimized repetitively for arithmetic, load/store and texturing. The GPU will also support standard graphics APIs such as Khronos OpenGL ES, OpenVG andMicrosoft DirectX® 11) as well as Compute APIs such as Khronos OpenCL (Full Profile), Google RenderScript compute and Microsoft DirectCompute. Performance-wise, Mali-T658 has twice as many shader cores and double the arithmetic pipelines per core which means the GPU can offer up to 10 times the performance of the Mali-400 MP GPU. On the compute side, Mali-T658 provides 4 times the processing power of Mali-T604. Mali-T658 will work with […]

National Geographic Augmented Reality Application

Impressive Augmented Reality Live Broadcast: Shoppers walk by a large screen in a mall where they can see themselves with wild animals, dinosaurs and walk with astronauts. This Augmented Reality system has been designed by AppShaker, a “digital creative agency devoted to building the finest online experiences for brands across the world”. You can also go to their website to watch their other projects. I suspect the augmented reality system above is based on a PC system. Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011. www.cnx-software.com

Qualcomm Fast Computer Vision SDK

Qualcomm introduced FastCV (Fast Computer Vision), a mobile-optimized computer vision (CV) library that includes the most frequently used vision processing functions for use across a wide array of Android mobile devices. FastCV provides computationally intensive vision processing APIs, with hardware acceleration and better performance on mobile devices. FastCV is designed for efficiency on all ARM-based processors, but is also especially tuned to take advantage of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon processors (Qualcomm S2 and above).  That’s because FastCV for Snapdragon can offload processing onto various subsystems within the processor, whereas FastCV for ARM is limited to acceleration on the CPU. FastCV is the framework at the heart of Qualcomm’s vision-based Augmented Reality (AR) SDK, because AR is much more precise and useful when it’s based on camera input than on location-based estimates. Qualcomm anticipates that FastCV will be used to build additional frameworks that will allow developers of computer vision apps to build […]

Texas Instruments OMAP 4 / OMAP 5 Update at ARM Techcon 2011

Katie Morgan interviews Brian Carlson, OMAP Product Line Manager – TI, at ARM Techcon 2011. They talk about current products using OMAP4 such as the Amazon Kindle Fire, Motorola Bionic, Motorola Razr and Toshiba AT200. Then they discuss about OMAP 5. Brian explains that OMAP 5 is an extension of OMAP 4 so that once you write software for OMAP 4 it will run on OMAP 5, so the transition is very easy. Products using OMAP 5 will start shipping end of 2012, beginning of 2013. They also talked about the new Cortex-A7 and big.LITTLE processing, but it seems there is no formal announcement from TI on the matter, right now. Finally, they showed two demos: an OMAP4 platform streaming 1080p video stream from Netflix and an augmented reality demo where you show a picture to the camera to start a video on the phone. Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)Jean-Luc started CNX […]

Renesas R-Car H1 Automotive SoC

Renesas announced the R-Car H1, their new automotice SoC with 4 Cortex-A9 cores clocked at 1GHz and Imagination Technologies’ SGX-543-MP2 graphics processing unit (GPU) aimed at high-end navigation systems. It also features a Renesas SH-4A high-reliability real-time processing CPU core acting as a multimedia engine (MME) . The R-Car H1 SoC can also powered with Renesas’ IMP-X3 core (optional), a real-time image processing unit that enables developers to implement augmented reality application such as  360-degree camera views (Thanks to up to four independent input camera channels) and sign recognition. Here’s an excerpt of the press release: Renesas Electronics Corporation (TSE: 6723) and its subsidiary, Renesas Mobile Corporation, today announced a new member of the R-Car series of automotive systems-on-chip (SoCs), the R-Car H1, capable of delivering up to 11,650 Dhrystone MIPS (DMIPS), and ideal for the high-end car navigation market. The R-Car H1 SoC offers an innovative architecture where the application […]

Android Developer Conference: DroidCon 2011 Schedule

DroidCon UK will be held for two days (October 6th & 7th 2011) at the Islington Design Center in London and boasts to be United Kingdom’s largest Android-only developer conference. Here’s the program for day 1 (6th of October): 9:00 Barcamp Talks will be selected by attended among the following proposals: From Publisher to Platform – the role of OpenSource in engaging with developers by Oscar Clark, Papaya Mobile. Reality of Mobile Advertising by Terence Eden, Inmobi. OpenGLES2 & Android QEMU Emulator by Jonathan White and Jose Commins, Accenture. Enhancing User Experience with HTC: 3D, Pen, and Audio Lance Nanek, HTC. Cisco Workshop by Marcus O’Sullivan, Cisco. OpenGL & NDK by Ashraf Hegab, Orange. Fed up with trying to make pay per download pay back? Try API revenue share by James Parton, o2. (Re)Branding Headache? Here’s your Pain Killer by Joana Cruz e Costa, Masabi. Smooth and User Friendly UI […]