Samsung has made a strong declaration of its commitment to the self-driving car market with the announcement of a new $300 million fund for automotive technology. The Samsung Innovation Fund will be concentrating on developing technology for connected vehicles as well as autonomous technology, such as smart sensors, artificial intelligence and connectivity solutions.
On top of announcing the new fund, Samsung also revealed that it is launching a new Autonomous/ADAS Strategic Business Unit along with HARMAN, the audio technology company that it acquired earlier this year. In a statement, Young Sohn, President and Chief Strategy Officer of Samsung Electronics and Chairman of the Board of HARMAN, said that the new unit combined with the fund “reflect the company’s commitment to the values of open innovation and collaboration. In partnership with OEMs and startups, we will make the driver and passenger experience safer, more convenient, and more enjoyable.”
First Investment Made to TTTech
The news comes just two weeks after Samsung was given approval to test self-driving cars in California, and some months after it had received the same approval for testing in South Korea. This all makes for a real ramping up of its involvement in the autonomous vehicle market, which is clearly seen as a huge market of the future.
There has already been an investment made from the new fund into TTTech, a company that develops networking and safety controls, and complex software integration for Advanced Driver Assisted Systems and automated driving. Previously, Samsung has made investments into a range of automotive startups specializing in a variety of fields, such as sensors, connectivity and high-performance computing.
Samsung has clearly stated that it is not interested in manufacturing vehicles themselves, but rather in collaborating with existing automakers to provide aspects of the technology that it needs. With this new fund and drive, all signs point to Samsung being an integral leader in the future of cars.
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