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Nvidia Reveals EGX Edge Supercomputing Platform For AI, IoT And 5G

'We’ve entered a new era, where billions of always-on IoT sensors will be connected by 5G and processed by AI. Its foundation requires a new class of highly secure, networked computers operated with ease from far away,' Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang says of the new EGX edge supercomputing platform.

Nvidia has revealed its new EGX edge supercomputing platform, a new push from the chipmaker to put GPUs at the forefront of artificial intelligence, IoT and 5G network infrastructure for edge environments such as factory floors, manufacturing inspection lines and city streets.

The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company said the new EGX platform, announced at Mobile World Congress in Los Angeles on Monday, has already been adopted by Walmart, BMW, Procter & Gamble, Samsung Electronics, NTT East as well as the cities of San Francisco and Las Vegas. In addition, the company announced a new EGX integration with Microsoft Azure for edge-to-cloud AI capabilities.

[Related: Nvidia CEO: Enterprise AI Is Driving Growth In The Data Center]

The new high-performance, cloud-native EGX platform, which combines Nvidia's CUDA-X software libraries and Nvidia's certified GPU servers and devices, is targeting demanding compute workloads that need to be processed close to where the data is collected.

"We’ve entered a new era, where billions of always-on IoT sensors will be connected by 5G and processed by AI," Jensen Huang, Nvidia's CEO and founder, said in a statement. "Its foundation requires a new class of highly secure, networked computers operated with ease from far away."

In the case of BMW, the company is using EGX to collect data from cameras and sensors on inspection lines at its South Carolina manufacturing facility to monitor and control the quality of its automobiles.

Walmart, on the other hand, is using EGX at its Intelligent Retail Lab concept store in Levittown, N.Y., to enable real-time AI capabilities, such as the ability to track product inventory or determine when to open new checkout lanes based on the level of foot track.

"With NVIDIA’s EGX edge computing platform, Walmart’s Intelligent Retail Lab is able to bring real-time AI compute to our store, automate processes and free up our associates to create a better and more convenient shopping experience for our customers," Mike Hanrahan, CEO of Walmart Intelligent Retail Lab, said in a statement.

Nvidia's EGX platform comes with frameworks and software development kits for a variety of verticals, including smart cities, manufacturing, healthcare and retail. The platform is supported by more than 20 validated servers from Dell Technologies, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Lenovo, QCT and Supermicro.

The chipmaker said its EGX ecosystem consists of more than 100 technology companies worldwide, ranging from startups and established software vendors to cloud service providers and device manufacturers. The platform's software stack architecture is supported by hybrid-cloud vendors Canonical, Nutanix, Red Hat and VMware.

Dominic Daninger, vice president of engineering at Nor-Tech, a Burnsville, Minn.-based high-performance computing system builder and Nvidia partner, said the EGX edge supercomputing platform is the next logical step for Nvidia as it seeks to become more prevalent in edge computing use cases.

"They've got some really good software development work done already and a lot of knowledge in that [area]," he said, which has allowed the chipmaker to expand its GPU acceleration capabilities beyond traditional data centers where more data is projected to be created over time.

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