Self-driving cars are being touted as the next big thing in technology, and Silicon Valley giants from Apple to Google are making a beeline for it. Google’s self-driving car division, Waymo, has now partnered with Intel to source the computing power necessary for its Level 4 and 5 autonomous vehicles. Waymo s self-driving mini-vans, which are operational in Arizona and California in US, have featured Intel-produced technology since 2015, The Verge reported. Also Read - Google News Showcase gets support for Malayalam and BengaliAlso Read - Over 600 illegal loan lending apps available on different App stores in India: RBI report
Waymo is working closely with Intel to pick-and-choose the components that are best suited for fully self-driving technology. In a Medium blog post, the company explained, “Waymo s self-driving vehicles can see 360 degrees, track thousands of moving objects simultaneously, and detect the subtle nuances of the road like a cyclist s hand signal. This kind of real-time understanding of the world requires not just advanced sensors and software, but a high-performance specialized computer to match.” ALSO READ: Apple shifts focus from hardware to software in self-driving car project: Report Also Read - Google Pixel 6a key specifications appear online, tipped to get custom Tensor chipset
Intel has built “a custom piece of silicon” that fits Waymo s sensor fusion needs, and tapped Intel s processing power. At present, Waymo is using the global chipmaker’s technologies for sensor processing, general compute and connectivity. “Over time we ll both learn we can bring more of the software… down onto the silicon, because you get performance, cost and power. There will be a regular cadence of new innovation and new silicon that comes out. That s really what we both get out of this,” Intel CEO Brian Krzanich told Reuters. ALSO READ: Samsung will now test self-driving cars in Google Waymo s backyard
Incidentally, Intel also holds a partnership with German automaker BMW and Fiat-Chrysler to create an industry-wide autonomous car platform. It perhaps also indicates the intent of pure-play automobile companies to enter the self-driving vehicle space, which is now seeing most action from tech firms. Besides Waymo, there’s Apple’s self-driving project that recently shifted focus from hardware to software. Apple has said that it will stick to developing technology for driverless cars, as opposed to manufacturing an entire vehicle. Possible partnerships with automakers cannot be ruled out thus.