OnQ Blog

Demystifying Distributed Intelligence [video]

Sep 10, 2020

Qualcomm products mentioned within this post are offered by Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.


In the last AI Explained in 101 Seconds episode, we explained what AI is and how AI is transforming how we interact with the world around us, through smartphones, automobiles, medical devices, robotics, and more.

Now that we’ve unraveled the mystery of AI, let’s talk about a new concept that takes existing AI to the next level: Distributed Intelligence.

AI takes different forms depending on where it resides. There is cloud AI, which is the type of AI that runs in the cloud. We access cloud AI every day on our devices — we use without even realizing it. This translates into seamless experiences that we sometime take for granted, such as browsing the internet, receiving recommendations, and transcribing our voice into text. These experiences can manifest in your smartphone, laptop or even your electric car, and are further enhanced by the fact that there is some heavy-duty AI processing being done in the cloud, powered by Qualcomm Cloud AI solutions.

While Qualcomm Cloud AI solutions are playing their role on the server side, there is additional processing being done on your device, which is called on-device AI.  AI can be broken down even further into its building blocks, called neural networks, which live and run on your device. The number of neural networks that are running on any given smartphone today is staggering, when these neural networks are firing and working in concert with each other, the AI processing capabilities needs to keep up. Mobile devices that are powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 or 865+ mobile platform are well-equipped to handle the most intensive AI processing. Being that these platforms are running 5th generation AI engines, it’s able to muscle through AI-intensive user experiences such as real-time translation-based, on-device AI, which debuted at the Snapdragon Tech Summit last year.

If you combine our on-device AI technology with cloud AI processing, and then throw in the speed of our 5G solutions as the link, you’ll have the basis of Distributed Intelligence — where AI is distributed across channels to power new experiences.  

Check out the video below, in which Qualcomm Technologies Vice President of Product Management Ziad Asghar explains and helps demystify how Distributed Intelligence works for real-time translation.

We hope you are as excited as we are about how the future with Distributed Intelligence.


Qualcomm Snapdragon and Qualcomm Cloud AI are products of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.


Opinions expressed in the content posted here are the personal opinions of the original authors, and do not necessarily reflect those of Qualcomm Incorporated or its subsidiaries ("Qualcomm"). Qualcomm products mentioned within this post are offered by Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries. The content is provided for informational purposes only and is not meant to be an endorsement or representation by Qualcomm or any other party. This site may also provide links or references to non-Qualcomm sites and resources. Qualcomm makes no representations, warranties, or other commitments whatsoever about any non-Qualcomm sites or third-party resources that may be referenced, accessible from, or linked to this site.

Ziad Asghar

Vice President, Product Management, Qualcomm Technologies

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