Baidu Adds Microsoft to Apollo Alliance
Microsoft Corp. has joined Baidu Inc.’s alliance to support the Chinese company’s Apollo open-source platform for autonomous vehicles.
Apollo encompasses cloud services, an open software stack and reference hardware to help speed and improve the implementation of automated vehicle functions.
Earlier this month Baidu announced some 50 alliance partners that include several top carmakers—BAIC, Chery, Chonqing Changan, Daimler, Ford and Great Wall—and top suppliers such as Bosch, Continental, Delphi, Intel, Nvidia, TomTom and ZF.
Microsoft will give the project global coverage through its Azure cloud storage service. This will allow users to process and store data, and access security and artificial intelligence capabilities.
Baidu’s Apollo platform, which will compete against an autonomous-car platform being developed by Alphabet Inc.’s Waymo unit, was created at the Chinese company’s Silicon Valley tech center. Chery has begun testing Baidu’s technology in several cars in China, where the platform is expected to be launched by the end of the decade.
The little car that could still can. And this time as a car that not only gets great fuel economy, but which has ride and handling that makes it more than an econo-box (and its styling is anything but boxy).
According to Sandor Piszar, Chevrolet truck marketing director, “We engineer and build our trucks with customers’ expectations in mind.”
Once the playground of exotic car makers, the definition of a niche vehicle has expanded to include image vehicles for mainstream OEMs, and specialist models produced on high-volume platforms.