If 2018 was when the trade was shocked into sobriety, 2019 can be a yr when pragmatism and the challenges of making an attempt to develop and scale a know-how received much more actual. The upshot: the trade is within the midst of its adolescent years, the place change can happen all of the sudden, inflicting confusion and awkward encounters. It’s a time when others develop far quicker than their friends.
And this coming yr guarantees some of the identical.
Cracks within the autonomous automobile trade — hid by quixotic zeal and a seemingly bottomless bucket of enterprise and company capital — turned too conspicuous to disregard within the opening months of 2018.
A high-profile commerce secrets and techniques case that pitted Waymo towards Uber revealed a cutthroat and reckless facet of the burgeoning trade. Just just a few weeks later, a self-driving Uber automobile killed a pedestrian whereas testing on public roads in Tempe, Arizona, main Uber to instantly halt all testing. And whereas different firms solely briefly paused testing of their very own, the incident forged a pall over an trade that aspires to make roads safer.
Flashy self-driving automotive demos slowed to a trickle and a few grumbled to TechCrunch about elevating capital. Timelines for business deployments of robotaxis received fuzzier. Research and advisory agency Gartner launched its annual Hype Cycle chart and autonomous automobiles have been proven getting into into the trough of disillusionment.
And so the chatter and bulletins at CES 2019 — the enormous tech present held every January in Las Vegas — shouldn’t have shocked anybody. It did anyway. Suddenly, or so it appeared, buzz phrases weren’t “driverless” and “robotaxis,” they have been “safety” and “advanced driver assistance systems,” a less-capable degree of automation that’s present in new sedans, SUVs and pickup vans.
This renewed concentrate on ADAS, together with flurry of partner-swapping, strategic offers and the start of consolidation within the trade can be the overarching themes in 2019. This yr, with CES 2020 simply days away, the ADAS love story will proceed together with consolidation and a gradual march in direction of restricted robotaxi deployment.
ADAS resets trade expectations
Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang set the stage for one of many themes at CES and the remainder of 2019 when he launched a Level 2+ system known as Nvidia Drive AutoPilot. The new product was launched as a reference platform that automakers and suppliers like Continental and ZF would be capable of use to convey extra refined automated driving options — not full…