Intel's first foray into the metaverse will be software to use others' chips

The Intel Corporation logo is seen on a display in a store in Manhattan, New York City, US, on NovĀ 24, 2021.
PHOTO: Reuters

In their first public comments on its strategy for tapping into the "metaverse," Intel Corp executives said the firm is working on software that will help laptops tap into computing power from other devices, including chips from its rivals.

While the definition of "metaverse" is broad, it generally refers to immersive virtual worlds that will be accessed via the internet and a variety of devices, like virtual reality headsets.

The trend is expected to require vastly more computing power, and firms like Nvidia Corp, which makes chips and software used to construct the virtual world, and Qualcomm Inc, which makes chips used in virtual reality headsets, have both gained value in recent months on investor enthusiasm about the metaverse.

At a news conference after a presentation at the RealTime Conference on metaverse technologies on Monday (Dec 13), Raja Koduri, head of Intel's accelerated computing systems and graphics group, said the company's first technology push into the metaverse will be software that helps devices take advantage of computing power that already exists and is unused.


For example, if a gamer is playing a graphics-heavy title on a laptop that would tax the system's chips but has an unused gaming PC in another room, the software could detect the spare power sitting idle on the PC and tap into it over a home network to make the laptop game run better.

Koduri said the software will work with chips from competitors. The software is designed to solve technical challenges for users, and not just to generate major revenue for Intel. Some of it will be shared, Koduri said.

"The way we are architecting all the layers is that it is going to work with everybody's hardware, as long as they are on industry-standard specifications," Koduri told reporters. "There'll be a lot of open-sourcing involved with everything that we build."

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