Qualcomm Inc.’s Atheros subsidiary is introducing a new line of microchips that let machines exchange information with each other using Wi-Fi networks.

Qualcomm (Nasdaq: QCOM) says the chips consume little power.

Target applications for the QCA4002 and QCA4004 platforms include major home appliances such as washing machines, air conditioners and water heaters. Other applications are consumer electronics, as well as sensors and smart plugs for home lighting, security and automation systems.

The platforms feature an on-chip processor and memory, which are designed to eliminate the need for a system controller that adds to product cost, complexity and power consumption. Qualcomm said that customers that use the QCA4004 chip will be able to write their own applications on the Qualcomm Atheros platform instead of simply using it for Wi-Fi connectivity.

The new microchips are one way Qualcomm is contributing to “the Internet of everything” — a vision of the future where all sorts of machines communicate via Internet.

— SDBJ Staff Report