Daily Post 1232
WHO WILL BE THE CAR AUTONOMOUS LEADER?
The company which wins the race to reaching the finishing line first in making the first fully autonomous car will rule the automobile industry in the days to come, seems to be fairly accepted. That being the case, the competition is hotting up. For the naive and uninitiated it would seem to be a business battle, in reality it is the selection and nature of technology mastered so far will decide the winner. On the face of it Waymo, GM and Ford are said to be in the lead. Tech evaluation between Waymo and Tesla, two serious contenders is both fascinating and decisive.
The first category to be compared is the Sensor Suite. While Waymo uses the laser scanning LIDAR technology, Tesla uses camera based system primarily banking on the massive strides made in the field of computer vision. The present signalling and other systems are meant for human eyes, computer vision adapts to it automatically. The costing also goes way higher for LIDAR based system.
Vision being primordial to navigation and driving, the approach to the goal becomes critical. LIDAR needs intensive mapping and relies heavily on geo-fencing, making it limited to the geography it has been trained in. One reason for Tesla’s lead is it being computer vision based. The cost of Waymo starting with base vehicle at $40,000 may go to the tune of $1,00,000 with add ons which is mandatory for its functioning, Tesla would cost $39,900 and if robot taxies are introduced as proposed it would be much lower.
Waymo owns 600 cars on date with the 10 million miles of autonomously driven data. Tesla has 6,00,000 cars with 2 billion miles drive generated data. Data will decide the pace of learning. Computer vision based learning is preparing it for a global fleet, geography notwithstanding. LIDAR and geo-fencing / costing will limit Waymo’s operations and progress. Tesla challenge of corner courses seem surmountable. It would be full self driven with feature complete system by the end of 2021 or beginning 2022. Waymo may take 5 to 10 years.
SELECTION OF THE KILLING TECHNOLOGIES & IT’s RAZOR SHARP APPLICATION WILL DECIDE THE WINNER OF THE AUTONOMOUS CAR’s RACE.