Today's Top News: Tesla Quietly Upgrades Autopilot Hardware

Tesla Quietly Upgrades Autopilot Hardware

Tesla CEO and founder Elon Musk has repeatedly said this year all Tesla models made since October 2016 have the requisite hardware for "full self-driving" capabilities, yet the company has reportedly begun to add a second graphics processor (GPU) to its computer platform for Autopilot — without officially saying why.

The addition of a newly configured neural network computer platform — codenamed HW 2.5 — coincides with the Model 3 launch, Electrek reports. The extra GPU is embedded in Nvidia's Drive PX2 neural network chip platform.

This addition is on top of the other new hardware in the model 3. As Driverless has previously reported, the Model 3's gearshift option is more geared for Level 4 driving compared to the Model S and X's, which were geared toward adaptive cruise control. The Model 3 also has a driver-monitoring sensor, which the Model S and X do not have.

However, Tesla has reportedly been downplaying the significance the additional GPU, maintaining that it will not significantly boost the performance of central Autopilot.

That could mean that even the Model S and X produced without the extra GPU would have the hardware for "full self-driving", as Musk has said, which the company could activate with an over-the-air update.

Toyota, Intel, and Others Team Up for Mapping

Intel, which just completed its purchase of Mobileye this week, has teamed up with Toyota and other firms, forming a consortium to co-develop technology to transfer massive amounts of mapping, connectivity, and other data to and from self-driving cars. According to Toyota, the volume of data transferred from cars will increase by 10,000 times compared to today's levels to more than 10 exabytes per month in 2025. In addition to Toyota and Intel, the other consortium members include Denso, Ericsson, and the Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corporation.

Elsewhere in the News

VC firm Benchmark Capital sues Uber founder and ex-CEO Travis Kalanick for fraud. Leading LiDAR producer Velodyne hires a new CFO to help grow its driverless business. Arizona proves very friendly for driverless car tests. Uber's first employee and senior vice president Ryan Graves steps down from his post but will remain a company board member.

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Cover photo by Tesla

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