The Semiconductor Imperative for Driving Meaningful Innovation
By Jim Elliott, Corporate Vice President Memory Sales & Marketing at Samsung Semiconductor
The speed of technology adoption is moving faster than ever, with our innovation cycle looking less like a wave than an arch, driven by proliferating technologies like AI, IoT, edge computing and cloud.
5G is essential to unlocking the true potential of these technologies, because in any scenario, latency is the villain. 5G can play the hero by ushering in a new era of speed and fulfilling our constant need for things to happen instantaneously.
We are at the tip of the iceberg when it comes to proliferation. One example: IDC estimates that there will be 41.6 billion connected IoT devices, generating 79.4 zettabytes (ZB) of data in 2025. IoT and other new applications are driving the data explosion at the edge, where the advent of 5G — for lowering latency, improving speeds and driving higher capacities — is bringing virtualization and edge computing to the forefront.
The fundamental fact is that more information than ever will need to be analyzed on millions of devices. And that’s where 5G will make accessing data dramatically faster and more efficient. Edge computing plays its part by taking memory and computing out of the traditional data center to enable faster data processing as close to the source as possible — which helps reduce latency and improve customer experiences.
But beyond improving network speed, 5G also increases bandwidth to connected IoT devices and systems. This would allow new technologies that require more bandwidth capacity to utilize 5G’s speed to capture data for cars, robots, sensors, and numerous other IoT devices so that they may seamlessly communicate with each other when needed, and meet insatiable user expectations.
Semiconductor innovation, the heart of everything
How do we enable all this speed, bandwidth, and lower latency? Under the hood of today’s innovations are semiconductor solutions, including DRAM, SSDs, processors, image sensors and other technologies. These devices are the foundation that’s fueling a new level of performance and presenting exciting possibilities for the future.
Diverse industries — including automotive, entertainment and healthcare — are harnessing semiconductor technologies to create connected, automated, and intelligent new offerings and business models. This has created a colossal shift in the semiconductor industry because companies operating in this sector need to invent new ways to support the digital transformation and sustain their competitive edge.
The resulting chip solutions make new IoT inventions possible. For instance, a single system-on-chip (SoC) provides high levels of integration and allows devices to operate with high power efficiency and security by packing a CPU, GPU, RF transceiver, memory, power management, connectivity, and sensors into a single unit. This combination of high-performance computing, storage and connectivity is enabling new levels of automation across industries. Here are some real-world use cases: