Microsoft’s Cloud Computing Tapped by Volkswagen to Develop Self-Driving Software

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Written by SciTechNerds

February 11, 2021

Microsoft’s Cloud Computing Tapped by Volkswagen to Develop Self-Driving Software

Volkswagen AG on Thursday mentioned it’ll use Microsoft’s cloud computing providers to assist it streamline its software program improvement efforts for self-driving automobiles.

Volkswagen, which owns manufacturers similar to Audi and Porsche, is engaged on each self-driving automobiles for the long run and driver-assistance options similar to adaptive cruise management in present autos. However the firm’s model had been creating these options independently.

Final yr, Volkswagen consolidated a few of these improvement efforts right into a subsidiary known as Automotive.Software program to raised coordinate among the many makers, with every firm dealing with its personal work round the appear and feel of the software program whereas collaborating on core security features similar to detecting obstacles.

However the numerous corporations contained in the group have been nonetheless utilizing completely different programs to develop that software program, and the deal introduced Thursday will put them on a typical cloud supplier, Dirk Hilgenberg, chief govt of Automotive.Software program, instructed Reuters in an interview.

The Microsoft deal can even make deploying software program updates so as to add new options to automobiles – a observe that helped set Tesla aside from many rivals early on – a lot simpler.

Volkswagen in 2018 inked a take care of Microsoft to attach its automobiles to Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing service. The Thursday deal signifies that the software program updates will probably be developed on the identical cloud that can then beam these updates right down to the automobiles.

“Over-the-air updates are paramount,” Hilgenberg mentioned. “This functionality needs to be there. If you can’t do it, you will lose ground.”

In sensible phrases, the deal signifies that automobiles that originally hit the highway with just a few driver-assistance options as we speak might add new capabilities over time that convey them nearer to autonomous driving, mentioned Scott Guthrie, govt vice chairman of cloud and synthetic intelligence at Microsoft.

“For our phones 15 or 20 years ago, when you bought it, it pretty much never changed. Now, we expected every week or every couple of days that, silently, there’s new features,” Guthrie instructed Reuters in an interview. “That ability to start to programme the vehicle in richer and richer ways, and in a safe way, transforms how the experience works.”

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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