We spilled a lot of virtual ink on Tesla AI Day 2022 recently, but there are several other self-driving stories from recent weeks that have been on the list waiting for their time to shine. Let’s catch up on a few of these other pieces.
1. Mobileye, the self-driving tech division of Intel that was bought by Intel several years ago, has filed to go public. On September 30, it was announced that Mobileye had filed for the IPO. In 2017, Intel bought Mobileye for a record $15.3 billion. Can Mobileye raise that much or more in its coming IPO? We’ll see. CNBC notes, “Mobileye’s filling indicates strong revenue growth for the Israeli-based subsidiary, from $879 million in sales in 2019, to $967 million in 2020, to $1.39 billion last year. Losses have shrunk from $328 million in 2019 to $75 million last year.” That’s a strong trend toward profits and solid financial sustainability. A big part of this play, though, is for Intel to raise money to focus harder on chipmaking. The company is aiming to concentrate more on this core business agenda. “Intel previously said that it would use some funds from the Mobileye listing to build more chip factories as it embarks on a capital-intensive process to become a foundry for other chipmakers.”
Mobileye has been partnering with numerous automakers in recent years to advance their semi-autonomous driving features. That includes BMW, Ford, NIO, Nissan, Volkswagen, WILLER, and Geely/Zeekr. The company now has its autonomous driving footprint in Paris, France; Munich, Germany; Tokyo, Japan; New York City, NY, USA; and elsewhere.
2. Argo AI has launched totally driverless robotaxi service in Austin in cooperation with Lyft. This service area adds to Argo AI’s robotaxi service in Miami, Florida, which was just launched in December. The cost, for now, is the same as it is if people book a normal Lyft car. “The app [enables] customers to unlock the vehicle’s doors, start the ride and contact customer support. That might feel weird at first, especially since there will actually be two humans sitting in the driver’s and passenger seats to monitor the ride for safety reasons.”
3. Waymo just launched the Waymo Accessibility Network. Waymo has been focused on serving those with disabilities well for years, but this formalizes their commitment to people with disabilities. “The Waymo Accessibility Network brings together disability advocates who share in the mission of improving access, mobility and safety in our communities. Through the network, Waymo will partner directly with organizations that support people of all ages with physical, visual, cognitive and sensory disabilities. Members include both national advocates and community-based nonprofits serving the cities where Waymo One operates. […]
“We are excited to announce that the 13 inaugural members of the Waymo Accessibility Network include the national nonprofits American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), National Federation of the Blind, United Spinal Association, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Epilepsy Foundation of America, Blinded Veterans Association, United Cerebral Palsy and the American Council of the Blind; San Francisco-based LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired, Independent Living Resource Center of San Francisco and Self-Help for the Elderly; and Arizona-based Foundation for Blind Children and Foundation for Senior Living.”
We’ve actually got much more to write about in the self-driving car space. Stay tuned in the coming days. However, it seemed prudent to quickly summarize these three stories before jumping into the weeds on specific technologies and software.
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