Intel Corp. continues in its efforts to convert its dominance of the PC market into a solid foothold in chips for the automotive market with new products and investments geared toward autonomous cars and devices. Two announcements from the company this week reinforces its hopes to capitalize on an industry that Morgan Stanley predicts will generate $507 billion in annual profits.
On Wednesday, the company announced that 'Intel GO,' which features a range of processors combined with software and other components, will be available in the first half of 2017. The new automotive solution offers multiple development kits that scale in performance, ranging from its Atom to Xeon processors. The company also announced the first 5G-ready development platform for automated driving, which will be available for testing in the second half of 2017.
"The importance of 5G to our self-driving future cannot be overstated. Automated vehicles will both generate and take in huge amounts of data in order to navigate and react to sudden changes," said Doug Davis, head of Intel's automotive unit, in a blog post. "Today’s communications systems simply were not designed to handle the massive bandwidth required to support this. That’s where 5G comes in, delivering faster speeds, ultra-low latency and vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) connectivity for the era of automated driving."
On Tuesday, Intel announced it bought a 15 percent share in digital-mapping company HERE for an undisclosed amount, joining Audi, BMW and Daimler in an investment that aims to build a global map and location database that doesn't rely on Apple or Google.
Intel and HERE also committed to the research and development of opportunities to enhance edge-computing devices with location data.
“A real-time, self-healing and high-definition representation of the physical world is critical for autonomous driving, and achieving this will require significantly more powerful and capable in-vehicle compute platforms,” said Edzard Overbeek, HERE CEO, in a statement. “As a premier silicon provider, Intel can help accelerate HERE’s ambitions in this area by supporting the creation of a universal, always up-to-date digital location platform that spans the vehicle, the cloud and everything else connected.”
Intel says it's uniquely positioned to produce secure, flexible and scalable technology for use in the self-driving car market from the vehicle to the data center. It's capabilities in high-speed wireless connectivity, cloud and machine-learning solutions will bolster its presence not only in the autonomous vehicle industry, but in the development of next generation location services that will fuel its growth in cloud computing and the Internet of Things.