Google's Waymo Teams With Intel on Self Driving Technology

Eric Schmidt and Anthony Foxx with Google car

Intel, which announced the $15 billion acquisition of autonomous vision company Mobileye in March, is pushing to expand in autonomous vehicles, a fast-growing industry, across a variety of business models.

Intel has announced it is teaming up with with Alphabet's Waymo self-driving unit. The collaboration is ongoing.

"With 3 million miles of real-world driving, Waymo cars with Intel technology inside have already processed more self-driving auto miles than any other autonomous fleet on US roads", wrote Intel CEO Brian Krzanich in a post released by the company.

"Intel's collaboration with Waymo ensures Intel will continue its leading role in helping realize the promise of autonomous driving and a safer, collision-free future". With Intel, Waymo's autonomous cars have covered more ground than any other fleet of autonomous cars now in operation, acquiring over 3 million miles of cumulative road travel - Waymo's actual mileage is higher than this, however, as the company reached 3 million miles on its own by May, and that's after all the progress it made in 2016.

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"Intel began supplying chips for then-Google's autonomous program beginning in 2009, but that relationship grew into a deeper collaboration when Google began working with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles to develop and install the company's autonomous driving technology into the automaker's minivans". The hybrid vehicles are expected to form part of Google's ridesharing service, and are already being tested in California.

According to the Reuters news agency, it is the first time Waymo has owned up to using an outside agency's technology. Second, Waymo is serious about its fully autonomous vehicle to the point that it is building its own proprietary computer technology that will include integrating Intel's processors into its own platform. For example, Ford went with Intel processors for its autonomous R&D vehicles.

Numerous existing self-driving cars on U.S. roads, including Waymo's, are now within or close to level 4 autonomy, making it one step away from being advanced enough to be fully autonomous.

Self-driving cars have Silicon Valley salivating. However, it wasn't until Waymo started the Chrysler Pacifica minivan project that it began working more closely with the chipmaker.

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