Intel to drive $250m into autonomous cars

James Pearce
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US firm will make investments over next two years across connectivity, communication, security and deep learning technologies

Chip-maker Intel has announced plans to invest more than $250 million in to the autonomous vehicle industry over the new two years.

Speaking at this year’s LA Auto Show conference, Intel CEO Brian Krzanich said the Capital arm of the US giant will look to drive the development of self-driving cars with the investments.

The investments will be in technologies that push the boundaries on next generation connectivity, communication, context awareness, deep learning, security, safety and more, Krzanich revealed in is keynote address.

He pointed to the increasing need for data that will be fuelled by the growing autonomous vehicle industry, saying self-driving cars will need 4,000GB per day to run. 

It already has partnerships with BMW and Mobileye to develop a self-driving vehicle by 2021, and is involved ina further 30 vehicle programmes currently on the road. Krzanich said this will increase to at least 49 by 2020.

“Today, we think we live in a world flooded with data, but compared to the future, today’s amount of data is relatively small,” he said. “In 2016, the average person generates 650MB of data a day – through use of their PCs, mobile phones and wearables. By 2020, projections show that the average person will generate 1.5GB of data a day. That’s an impressive 200 percent increase in less than four years – but it pales in comparison to what we’re about to see in autonomous vehicles.

“Just as oil has transformed our world over the last century, data is poised to transform our world for the next hundred years – and beyond.

“The automotive ecosystem has an incredible opportunity to use data to drive insights, take action on new business opportunities, and even create a safer, less contentious world. Let’s look at three types of data and the value that they will create.”

A number of telcos are getting involved in the autonomous vehicle market. SK Telecom, for example, recently signed up to the 5G Automotive Association, which aims to promote vehicle technology.