Delphi Adds Partners to Speed Development of Autonomous Vehicles
Delphi announced a series of partnerships in its quest to manage and monetize big data and improve the brains of future vehicles. The goal: Customers will drive smarter cars that can help make their lives easier while the industry pools its knowledge to help all in their development of connected or self-driving vehicles.
The business dealings include taking a minority stake in two Israel-based startups and forming a partnership with a third company out of Germany.
There could be 2 billion connected vehicles on the road by 2025, said Mary Gustanski, vice president of engineering for Delphi. And every vehicle generates reams of data that can help the industry improve its products. That data can also be a moneymaker.
It requires consumers who own their data to allow automakers to use it. The payback is knowing the cloud has information that can help. It can diagnose why a vehicle broke down and send the necessary equipment. If it is a dead battery, a van with jumper cables can be dispatched quicker than waiting for a tow truck. By self-diagnosing, a trip to the dealer can be scheduled and streamlined if the data is sent ahead of time to outline the work to be done. Insurance companies can use driving data to tailor policies to the driver and their vehicle and driving habits instead of issuing a policy based on generalities. And consumers benefit if automakers share data and are able to speed development of new technology that makes vehicles more efficient, safer, and better to drive.
Delphi has acquired a stake in Israeli startup Valens, which makes microchips and semiconductors to transmit data over a single cable incorporated into the vehicle’s electrical architecture. This makes it possible to move data to the cloud and back six times faster and more cost effectively. The amount of the investment was not disclosed.
Delphi has formed a partnership with Germany’s Rosenberger, which provides Ethernet connections and makes fiber optics to enhance data transfer and management.
Delphi also paid an unspecified amount for a stake in startup Otonomo, which will create a cloud-based data marketplace. It will act as a broker, taking data from automakers in all forms, aggregating it, and offering tools for others to pay to access and use it. Customers could include emergency responders, fleet managers, insurance companies, and other automakers.
Delphi is a systems integrator that sees these kinds of deals as a way to speed development of technology needed for autonomous cars. Delphi will offer automakers the full bundle to be able to gather and use data, or it can provide piecemeal services to access and process big data so the carmakers don’t have to do this work themselves and can concentrate on vehicle and technology development. It can be a turnkey solution for companies that are behind in developing autonomous vehicles.
In addition to aggregating the data, Otonomo ensures privacy rules are met in every jurisdiction that a vehicle enters. And consumers can opt not to provide their vehicle data. Some automakers are expected not to participate, either, but Delphi chief technical officer Glen De Vos said a number of major companies have already expressed interest and will be clients.