Sony 12.3MP AI Image Sensor will team up with Microsoft Azure.

Sony Semiconductor Solutions and Microsoft are partnering to create solutions that make AI-powered smart cameras and video analytics that are easier to access and deploy for their mutual customers.

The partnership will result in the companies embedding Microsoft Azure AI capabilities on Sony’s intelligent vision sensor IMX500, which extracts useful information out of images in smart cameras and other devices. Sony will also create a smart camera-managed app powered by Azure IoT and Cognitive Services that complements the IMX500 sensor and expands the range and capability of video analytics opportunities for enterprise customers.

The combination of these solutions will bring together Sony’s imaging and sensing technologies, including high-speed edge AI processing, with Microsoft’s Cloud expertise and AI platform to uncover new video analytics opportunities for customers and partners across a variety of industries, according to the companies.

“By linking Sony’s innovative imaging and sensing technology with Microsoft’s excellent Cloud AI services, we will deliver a powerful and convenient platform to the smart camera market,” said Terushi Shimizu, representative director and president, Sony Semiconductor Solutions Corp.

The integration is said to result in smarter, more advanced cameras for use in enterprise scenarios as well as a more efficient allocation of resources between the edge and the Cloud to drive cost and power consumption efficiencies.

“Video analytics and smart cameras can drive better business insights and outcomes across a wide range of scenarios for businesses,” said Takeshi Numoto, corporate vice president and commercial chief marketing officer at Microsoft.

“Through this partnership, we’re combining Microsoft’s expertise in providing trusted, enterprise-grade AI and analytics solutions with Sony’s established leadership in the imaging sensors market to help uncover new opportunities for our mutual customers and partners.”

Sony’s smart camera-managed app powered by Azure is targeted toward independent software vendors (ISVs) specializing in computer vision and video analytics solutions, as well as smart camera original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) aspiring to add value to their hardware offerings.

The app will complement the IMX500 sensor and will serve as the foundation on which ISVs and OEMs can train AI models to create their own customer and industry-specific video analytics and computer vision solutions that address enterprise customer demands.

The app is said to simplify key workflows and take reasonable security measures designed to protect data privacy and security, allowing ISVs to spend less time on routine, low-value integration and provisioning work and more time on creating unique solutions to meet customers’ demands.

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