LIVE FROM MWC SHANGHAI 24: Qualcomm CFO and COO Akash Palkhiwala (pictured, right) hailed the impact AI will have across all the industries it now targets, highlighting new use cases particularly in the automotive sector.

Qualcomm has been on a mission to broaden its product portfolio beyond chips for smartphones for several years. It has diversified into automotive, XR, PCs and the Industrial market, all areas that look set to be transformed by fast-growing AI technology.

Reflecting on the company’s roadmap and timeline for these target markets, Palkhiwala noted that smartphones remain Qualcomm’s “base market and those devices are being transformed with AI.”

He then highlighted automotive as a market where it has “established ourselves as the leader for computing and AI on the device. There’s lots of new genAI use cases coming into the cockpit…I’d say that’s next.”

“XR, we’ve already proven ourselves from a tech perspective but XR might be the device that changes the most because of genAI. Using an AI assistant you’ll be able to do things you wouldn’t have done in the past because you won’t be constrained by form factor and size of display. All of that could change. That is a device that could have very significant disruption.”

“The next one in the sequence is PC and the last one is Industrial.”

The executive noted that seeing markets in this timeline “allows us to draw a longterm runway for the company.”

Intelligent cars
Palkhiwala highlighted the automotive market as one where the user experience could be hugely improved thanks to AI. “One of the challenges as an experience for the consumer is something goes wrong and there’s a light on the dashboard and you don’t know what it is. Then the effort to find out what is going on with the car, get an appointment, get it fixed is unnecessarily long.

“Why not take an AI model, train it on the manual of the car and make it available as a genAI experience to the end user where you have a conversation with the car about what’s wrong and then the car can offer you ways and how to repair it? It’s a very simple use case, technologically not that difficult to do, but it allows you to get over one of the things users don’t like about a car. The user experience of dealing with a  problem with a car is less than satisfactory and that could change.”