Marvell co-founder Weili Dai: Chromecast is a game changer

Marvell Co-Founder Weili Dai

Marvell’s co-founder and president Weili Dai has been talking about the connected lifestyle for some time. Now, there’s finally a device that could make her vision a reality: Google’s new Chromecast video adapter, which makes it easy to beam media straight from mobile devices and desktop browsers to the TV. “This is a good example of a game-changing situation,” Dai told me in an interview Friday. “We are very excited.”

Chromecast is powered by Marvell’s ARMADA 1500-mini chipset, which enables 1080p video playback, common DRM standards and everything else you’d expect from a smart TV device with very little power consumption and a low price tag, allowing Google to sell the device for just $35.

Dai called Chromecast “strategically critical” during our conversation, explaining that Marvell’s vision has always been to provide the underlying technology to let consumers access any content, anytime and anywhere. “Chromecast really addressed that,” she said, by bringing mobile devices and the TV screen together. “I call it the magic glue,” she added.

Dai painted Chromecast as part of a bigger change for the semiconductor business, arguing that for companies like Marvell, it’s not just about making chips anymore, but about providing complete solutions for today’s connected consumer.

Media consumption across devices is one of those areas, but the next big frontier could be around big data and its use for our personal well-being, Dai said. “People talk a lot about big data,” she said, “but what do you do with that big data?” The next big opportunity for entrepreneurs would be to leverage all those data points from smart devices and sensors around us to make a difference in people’s lives, she said.

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