Sunday , 4 December 2016
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Intel Steps on the Gas, Launches New Self-Driving Car Group

Intel is the latest Silicon Valley company to join the race to corner the self-driving car market, launching a new initiative this week focused on the technology behind autonomous vehicle systems.

The iconic semiconductor giant on Tuesday announced the formation of its Automated Driving Group, which “will be solely dedicated to innovating the future of driving and designing the next generation of advanced driver-assist systems and autonomous driving solutions,” wrote Murthy Renduchintala, president of Intel’s internet of things business.

Intel has been competing in the self-driving and connected-car industry for some time — it expects to rake in $1 billion by 2020 in deals providing chips and software to dozens of car brands — but by carving out a separate self-driving car group, Intel is signaling a greater commitment to the industry.

“I would think it’s a smart move for them,” said Michael Pack, director of the University of Maryland’s Center for Advanced Transportation Technology Laboratory. “They need to get out and brand themselves and let the rest of the industry know that they are a player.”

The move follows what many considered to be Intel’s failure in smartphone and tablet chips. After struggling in that market, Intel reportedly canceled the upcoming launch of its new mobile chip last spring, ceding the mobile space to competitors such as Apple and Samsung.

As self-driving cars move closer to mass production, more mainstream tech companies are seeing the value in associating their names with the market. Chipmakers such as Qualcomm and Nvidia have jumped on the bandwagon — hoping their products will be the ones to power the brains of the world’s future smart cars — and Microsoft reportedly is partnering with carmakers to get its operating systems into their autonomous vehicles.

Intel has been building up to Tuesday’s launch for months. In July the company announced a…

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