Waymo, or formerly known as Google is the company focusing on creating driverless cars or in this case, minivans. The company just announced that they have Intel inside after all. For a company that strives to go in-house for the core technologies for autonomous vehicles, Waymo has also tapped the behemoth that is Intel for chips that goes into the car’s onboard computer.
In Waymo’s latest line of Chrysler Minivans, Intel chips are used to compute almost everything, from sensor data to connectivity and Intel says that they are working with Waymo to achieve Level 4 and Level 5 of autonomous vehicles.
“Given the pace at which autonomous driving is coming to life, I fully expect my children’s children will never have to drive a car. That’s an astounding thought: Something almost 90 percent of Americans do every day will end within a generation. With so much life-saving potential, it’s a rapid transformation that Intel is excited to be at the forefront of along with other industry leaders like Waymo,” Intel CEO Brian Krzanich wrote in a blog post.
Specifically, Waymo’s minivans use Xeon processors, Arria FPGA chips for image analytics and Gigabit Ethernet and XM modems for connectivity and communications. That is a lot of items from Intel and it goes to show that Waymo has been relying on Intel for some key functionality in their overall system to bring self-driving cars to reality.
Surprisingly, Waymo chose Intel instead of NVidia who have been supplying the Drive PX driving computing platform to large players such as Toyota, Audi, Volvo, Mercedes-Benz and Tesla. Either way, Waymo is fast becoming the player where they want to own the core technology instead of leveraging it from third party suppliers.