Intel’s upcoming CPU, codenamed “Meteor Lake,” is set to introduce a significant advancement in the PC AI experience by featuring a dedicated Vision Processing Unit (VPU). In collaboration with Microsoft, Intel aims to bring AI capabilities to PCs through the integration of a VPU as part of the SoC tile within Meteor Lake.
Back in 2016, Intel acquired Movidius, a VPU company, and integrated their technology into certain mobile CPUs like Raptor Lake. However, the significance of this integration was not widely emphasized at the time. The landscape has since dramatically changed, with the world increasingly embracing AI, including powerful models like ChatGPT, making it clear that we are now truly in the age of AI.
Meteor Lake adopts a chiplet design, leveraging various intellectual properties (IPs) to create Intel’s first client System-on-Chip (SoC). The chip will consist of dedicated Compute, Graphics, SoC, and I/O tiles, representing Intel’s strategy for future disaggregation chip architecture. Notably, the VPU housed in the SoC tile will serve as a crucial component, utilizing AI-based accelerators to drive machine learning and deep learning models in the next-generation iteration of Windows 11.
According to Intel, the VPUs in Meteor Lake will work in conjunction with AI accelerators present in the CPU and GPU tiles to execute AI models efficiently. Windows 11 has already begun incorporating AI features in Windows Studio Effects, harnessing the capabilities of the VPU to enhance microphone and camera effects, such as depth of field and line effects. Intel envisions further evolution of the Meteor Lake VPU, anticipating its involvement in video editing tasks within Premier Pro and the facilitation of new multimedia features.
The integration of a dedicated AI VPU within Intel’s Meteor Lake CPU represents a major step forward in enabling advanced AI experiences on PCs. As the world embraces the age of AI, the collaboration between Intel and Microsoft is poised to shape the future of AI-powered computing. Given Microsoft’s strong commitment to AI in Windows 11 and subsequent versions, this integration is expected to be a significant selling point for both companies.