Science & Technology



Qualcomm's new Snapdragon Ride platform is first step toward self-driving cars

Mike Freeman, The San Diego Union-Tribune on

Published in Science & Technology News

While no automakers have ordered Snapdragon Ride, the company expects that its experience supplying connectivity, vehicle diagnostics and infotainment technologies to auto companies will help it gain a foothold with its advanced driver assistance/self-driving vehicle platform.

"I know our customers who have been working with us in previous areas are going to be very excited to see what we have to offer" with Snapdragon Ride, said Duggal.

GM on Monday pledged to work with Qualcomm on advanced driver-assistance technologies. The two companies have done business together for years, with Qualcomm supplying wireless connectivity for GM's OnStar service.

"As we enter into a new era of innovation built on higher performance, low power (computing) and artificial intelligence, we are very pleased to be expanding our decade-long partnership with GM into digital cockpit and Advanced Driver Assistance Systems,"Cristiano Amon, Qualcomm's president, said in a statement.

Two years ago, Qualcomm received regulatory permission to test self-driving vehicles in San Diego County, with experimental runs occurring near its Sorrento Mesa headquarters and on local highways. In October, a portion of Highway 905 was shut down briefly so the company could try out three self-driving vehicles.

On top of Snapdragon Ride, Qualcomm also introduced a secure Cloud-to-Car Service, which allows automakers to update software, future-proof the vehicle, gather maintenance data and possibly offer new services personalized for the driver.


The company also updated a fledgling peer-to-peer technology called Cellular-Vehicle-Everything, or C-V2X. It enables cars to communicate directly with other nearby C-V2X enabled vehicles, stoplights and other smart cities infrastructure at distances beyond line of sight.

The technology is not widely deployed. But Qualcomm said on Monday that more than 10 auto industry suppliers, a dozen smart cities infrastructure providers and 11 other auto/smart cities module outfits are ready to roll out C-V2X technology.

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