Self-driving tech the hit at CES

Written by Mark Evans

Cisco and Hyundai, NVIDIA and VW, this year’s CES has seen a rush for technology companies to partner carmakers.

Added to the mix the more radical new entrants – this year it being Byton, a Chinese start-up that looks to compete on style (it has several ex-Apple employees) and many other smaller link ups and the worlds of V8s and chips that once seemed – well – worlds apart and now seamless.

First off, Cisco and Hyundai Motor Company have announced the production of a ‘hyperconnected car’ with 'over-the-air updates'. The result should be tighter, multi-layer, security as well as full end-to-end networking - allowing for true sensor integration.

Meanwhile NVIDIA CEO Jensen Huang has announced that the company is collaborating with over 300 partners on self-driving vehicles.

Underscoring NVIDIA’s role, the company announced partnerships with VW; gearbox and specialist supplier ZF; Uber; and Aurora, a well-regarded start-up in autonomous driving .

“The complexity of autonomous driving, the complexity of the software of future cars is incredible,” Huang said. “It starts with, of course, building a brand new type of processor we call the DRIVE Xavier, an autonomous machine processor that is able to do deep learning, perception, has the ability to do parallel computing and also computer vision and high performance computing at very, very energy-efficient levels.”

With more than 9 billion transistors, Xavier is the most complex system on a chip created, representing the work of more than 2,000 NVIDIA engineers over a four-year period, and an investment of USD2 billion in research and development, he explained.

Huang also announced that Uber has selected NVIDIA technology for the AI computing system in its fleet of self-driving vehicles. The collaboration will use NVIDIA technology for Uber Advanced Technologies Group’s fleets of self-driving cars and freight trucks.

NVIDIA will also work with Baidu, of China, and ZF to create a production-ready AI autonomous vehicle platform.