South Korean operator SK Telecom (SKT) outlined its AI business vision, as it unveiled a home-grown chip it will use in data centres to improve the voice recognition capability of its Nugu assistant.

It stated the Sapeon X220 chip processes large amounts of data in parallel, cutting the time taken to handle AI tasks along with the power used. It claims the chip consumes 20 per cent less power than a GPU and is about half the price.

The operator explained Sapeon X220 will increase the performance of AI data centres by speeding the computation of massive amounts of data.

SKT’s security unit ADT Caps will use the chip to boost the performance of its AI-based video monitoring service T View, while the operator’s media platform Cast.era, a joint venture with Sinclair Broadcast Group, will use it in its cloud servers.

As part of its AI strategy, SKT said it aims to combine AI chips and 5G edge cloud to deliver high-quality AI services with ultra-low latency regardless of the device.

It also plans to develop an AI-as-a-service business, combining the chip and related software.

The company worked closely with affiliate SK Hynix, the world’s second-largest memory chipmaker, to develop the chip.