Today, chip designer Arm has announced the new Arm Cortex-M55 processor which is promising to enhance on-device machine learning (ML) capabilities and signal processing for the smallest of IoT and embedded applications.

As an Arm partner, we had early access to Cortex-M55. We were impressed to see that our – already lean – sound recognition software (ai3™) will be at least 50% faster on M55-based chips when compared to an Cortex-M4 and that’s before enabling M-Profile Vector Extensions (aka Helium), which then results in a further doubling of performance. As a result, we would expect a Helium-powered M55 device to be 4x faster over an Cortex-M4 at a like-for-like clockspeed on the workloads we present.

Machine learning on endpoint devices, irrespective of their size, is critical to AI reaching every part of our lives. The performance enhancements made possible by this new chip and these new vector extensions will deliver a major step change in tinyML.

There is considerable demand to run advanced AI, like sound recognition, at the edge of the network. Principally because cloud infrastructure is expensive and edge-based processing offers privacy benefits for end users. Now, thanks to Arm, next-generation consumer and IoT devices can deliver supercharged AI at even lower power and lower cost. The net result is being able to fit more features onto a device or being able to offer AI on an AA battery. With Helium, next-generation Cortex-M processors gain the vectorising capabilities of Neon-class processors, along with other new capabilities, which together deliver tangible improvements in performance, and cost, in the microcontroller space. You can read more from my blog on why Helium matters here.

We look forward to seeing our customers launch revolutionary new products and services with our world-leading sound recognition technology running on these next-generation Cortex-M CPUs. You can learn more about the new processor from Arm here.

Later this week, I will be presenting a poster titled ‘Engineering tinyML models in sound recognition’ at the tinyML Summit in San Francisco.


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 About Audio Analytic 

Audio Analytic is the pioneer of AI sound recognition technology. The company is on a mission to give machines a compact sense of hearing. This empowers them with the ability to react to the world around us, helping satisfy our entertainment, safety, security, wellbeing, convenience, and communication needs across a huge range of consumer products.

Audio Analytic’s ai3™ and ai3-nano™ sound recognition software enables device manufacturers to equip products at the edge with the ability to recognize and automatically respond to our growing list of sounds and acoustic scenes.