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Samsung Forges Bio-Processor for Wearables

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Dec 29, 2015, 8:12 AM   by Eric M. Zeman   @phonescooper

Samsung is taking direct aim at the wearable market with a new processor custom-designed to monitor health and fitness data. The Bio-Processor combines Analog Front Ends (AFEs), a micro controller, a power management integrated circuit, a digital signal processor, and an eFlash memory chip into a single module. Samsung says this allows it to keep the size of the chip much smaller than if each component were to be used separately. The Bio-Processor has a total of five AFEs to take different measurements, including body fat, skeletal muscle mass, heart rate/rhythm, skin temperature, and stress level. The company believes the chip will help improve the type of data generated by wearables and provide users with even more data about their health. Samsung says the Bio-Processor is already in mass production and is available to device-makers in several reference designs, including wrist-based wearable and patch. Samsung didn't say if it will use the Bio-Processor in its own wearables, such as its Galaxy Gear smartwatch line. Samsung has spent the last year bolstering its processor and chip businesses to make up for losses in other divisions.

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