What does the forthcoming future hold for the market of driverless cars? Let us delve into this question referring to the forecasts of Frost & Sullivan and a review of a company delivering financial information Bloomberg.
Self-driving cars cap in 2019–2020
As anticipated by Frost & Sullivan, the market of driverless cars in 2019 would go up to $84 bn. By contrast, in 2018, it was estimated at $1.3 bn. According to the experts, such a jump in the cap is due to the significant increase in investments in this segment: Audi alone is going to allocate about $40 bn for this industry within the following five years.
What is more, Frost & Sullivan representatives think that the market of autonomous cars would be restricted to three-four major players offering the whole range of solutions.
Key players on the driverless car market
Bloomberg published the ranking of the most influential representatives of the driverless car market in the second half of 2018. Its key positions belong to Waymo, General Motors, Audi, and Tesla Motors.
Google-designed project Waymo maintains its lead on the market due to several reasons: the company does not hesitate to introduce its driverless cars to public roads, its developers work at Google (which adds to the promotion) as well as the manufacturer gets allocations from influential investors.
The tests of Waymo vehicles brought satisfying results: over a 560 000 km road, human help was needed only thrice. On the contrary, Waymo's biggest competitor General Motors engaged human assistance 22 times for 212 000 km.
Nonetheless, Waymo autonomous cars also have disadvantages: their artificial intelligence cannot differentiate a crumpled piece of paper from a stone lying on the road, its performance is poor when the weather is rainy, and it isn’t trained to park. Google promises to remove these inconveniences by 2020.
General Motorsis an American automobile corporation benefitting from tremendous investments. For example, Japanese fund SoftBank parked $2.25 bn in the GM’s department working on driverless cars. General Motors allocated $1.1 bn for the development of this segment.
In 2019, General Motors plans to launch an app for the driving experience by Chevrolet Cruise, an autonomous vehicle with no driving wheel and pedals. The company’s competitors are not that optimistic about such a car, so they plan to enter the market of these technologies no sooner than 2020.
Audi is among the pioneers of the connected cars industry. Audi A3 2014 is the first car with imbedded 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot. This technology has established a standard of contemporary connected vehicles.
In 2019, the company presented driverless car model Audi E-Tron at CES. As a result of the cooperation with Disney, the developers synchronized forward, backward, and side car movement with a VR video game to make driving experience entertaining.
As promised by the manufacturer, the company would offer 20+ electric autonomous models by 2025.
Many auto enthusiasts may associate the word ‘self-driving car’ with Tesla. However, successful marketing and popularity of Elon Musk are not the only thing that has driven Tesla Motors to the market heavyweights.
Tesla has an imbedded autopilot to switch lines and outpace other vehicles. What is more, instead of LiDAR sensors that are frequently inbuilt in driverless cars, Tesla develops a more sophisticated machine vision system that uses cameras for location recognition.
In 2018, Tesla’s autonomous electric trucks carried out the first goods delivery. Elon Musk presented the vehicle’s prototype in November 2017. Since that time, Pepsi, Walmart, and Anheuser-Busch ordered Tesla’s trucks.
Ukrainian market of self-driving cars
In Ukraine, the manufacturing of smart cars can be described as burgeoning. For example, in 2018, Zaporizhia-located company Infocom Ltd developed the first Ukrainian driverless car based on ZAZ Lanos.
The system of autonomous driving Pilotdrive designed for Lanos can be installed in any transport means: trucks, passenger cars, or buses. Hardware details come are bought from overseas manufacturers while software is fully developed by the engineers at Infocom Ltd.
Creation of software for self-driving cars is one of the prospective directions on the Ukrainian market. For instance, in 2018, automobile tech enthusiast Chelsie May presented top 10 producers of software aimed at connected cars. Two Ukrainian companies are mentioned there.
Intellias is one of the world’s key developers focused on solutions for connected cars. It uses Big Data technologies, cloud infrastructure with a high level of security, and precise navigation systems. Intellias’ main directions in the field of connected cars include remote diagnostics, OTA updates, and customized online solutions.
Ignite is an Israeli-Ukrainian software development company. It offers specialized services for the automobile and fintech segments, media industry, and entertainment. The company developed a rich portfolio of complex solutions based on Big Data, IoT, and cloud platforms.
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