Long known for its industry-leading graphic chips, NVIDIA (NASDAQ: NVDA) stock has enjoyed a stellar run over the past year thanks to its push into new, high-growth markets including virtual reality (VR). Another area of focus for the company is driverless-car technology, and it recently announced ambitious plans to enhance its longtime partnership with Audi to "put advanced A.I. cars on the road starting in 2020."
The news that NVIDIA's expanding its decade-long strategic partnership with Audi isn't necessarily a surprise. But the notion that NVIDIA's DRIVE PX artificial intelligence platform will be at the heart of a driverless Audi ready to roll just three years from now seems awfully aggressive.
However, at the annual Computer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas this week, NVIDIA founder and CEO Jen-Hsun Huang said, "Adoption of our DRIVE computing platform for A.I. cars will accelerate the introduction of next-generation autonomous vehicles." The DRIVE package is hardly a plug-and-play solution, but it clearly packs a punch if Huang thinks it's able to meet such a short turnaround time.
Lucky CES attendees will have an opportunity to demo an A.I. driverless Audi Q7 loaded with DRIVE PX and NVIDIA's DriveWorks software.
Huang also announced a strategic partnership with mapping and location services provider HERE to develop a high-definition mapping solution for autonomous vehicles, which will also be tied to the cloud to allow for environmental changes and instant updates.
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