Uber and Nvidia have taken to CES 2018 to announce a key collaboration as the two have teamed up for Uber's next-generation self-driving cars.
The autonomous vehicle race is on and a number of heavyweight companies are striving to make progress in the area. Uber has a tough year and some notable setbacks, including a high-profile legal dispute with Google's Waymo self-driving car unit. However, it's determined to push through and overcome its challenges.
Uber Self-Driving Cars With Nvidia AI
With Nvidia as one of its major technology partners for its self-driving car fleet, Uber will add advanced artificial intelligence features to its autonomous driving software.
Uber started working on its self-driving car tech back in 2015 and has made notable progress since, launching trials on Phoenix, Arizona, and Pittsburgh, PA. Its autonomous cars have operated more than 50,000 passenger trips, logging more than two million miles, with more to come.
Uber started using Nvidia chips in its first Volvo XC90 SUV test fleet. The two companies are now deepening their collaboration and taking things to the next level.
At CES, the companies have proudly announced that Nvidia technology will be powering the AI computing system in Uber's next-generation fleet of self-driving cars. Nvidia tech on Uber's autonomous vehicles and freight trucks will deliver advanced AI algorithms that will allow vehicles to understand the world around them, predict what's about to occur next, and determine the best action, be it in simple or complicated scenarios.
Jensen Huang, Nvidia founder and CEO, says that mobility services will revolutionize how transportation will be handled in the future. Affordable and convenient solutions will change society altogether, offering viable alternatives to keep up with the increase in world population, and self-driving cars are front and center in that vision.
"Autonomous vehicles are the critical technology to making mobility services pervasive," says Huang. "We're thrilled to be working with Uber to realize this vision."
As Nvidia points out, self-driving cars have huge computational requirements as they have to understand their surroundings based on 360-degree high-resolution cameras, Lidar systems, and advanced AI. They need great accuracy in everything they do, which requires an enormous amount of processing to ensure a high safety level.
According to Nvidia, self-driving cars have computing demands up to 100 times higher compared to those of the most advanced vehicles currently on the market.
"Developing safe, reliable autonomous vehicles requires sophisticated AI software and a high-performance GPU computing engine in the vehicle," says Eric Meyhofer, who leads Uber Advanced Technologies Group. "NVIDIA is a key technology provider to Uber as we bring scalable self-driving cars and trucks to market."