Frore Systems Emerges From Stealth With $100M From Investors Including Mayfield And Qualcomm Ventures

Everyone has heard that fan kick on in their laptop or tablet, followed by that dread that inevitably the device is about to slow down to a crawl.

Frore Systems emerged from stealth Thursday promising to fix that issue — and with some big-named backers behind it.

The company, which has spent the last four years developing its AirJet chip, announced it has raised more than $100 million from the likes of Mayfield 1, Addition, Clear Ventures and Qualcomm Ventures. Frore founders Seshu Madhavapeddy and Surya Ganti both worked at Qualcomm in the past.

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The company also announced a collaboration with Intel for its Intel Evo laptops.

The problem

Heat is a big problem in computing — as anyone who has ever felt their phone or tablet warm up knows. A device’s processor generates more heat the faster it works. Most manufacturers of devices install mechanical fans to help with cooling or force the processor to slow if overheated.

Neither solution is ideal, especially since cutting the processor’s power can cause your device to slow or stall.

“While the latest processors promise higher performance, only 50% or less is realized because the thermal solutions are still the same, old, passive or fan-based systems that are inadequate, noisy, and bulky,” said founder and CEO Madhavapeddy in a release.

“Thermal is the only aspect of modern-day computing that still uses century-old technology,” Madhavapeddy said. “In today’s devices, what often determines performance is the capability of the thermal solution and not the sophistication of the processor.”

The cooling chips come in two sizes from the San Jose-based startup  — the AirJet Mini and AirJet Pro — and cool silently while not slowing the processor.

The mini chip is already shipping, while the larger pro chip is anticipated to ship in the first quarter of next year.

Illustration: Dom Guzman

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