German manufacturer Bosch claimed automated driving systems will bring it 1 billion euro worth of annual sales by next year.
Bosch has a team of technologists that are developing refined embedded systems to improve autonomous driving. This includes “more powerful” variations on the minicomputers that are currently installed in modern cars. It already has a succesful radar and sensor arm which boasts Google and Tesla amongst its customers.
The company behind driverless car tech
This sales boost is due to a consumer shift toward safety and fuel efficiency, the Stuttgart firm claims.
It sold more than 50 million surround sensors for driverless technologies last year – to customers including BMW – and believes this will double again this year.
Dirk Hoheisel, member of the board of management at Bosch, told Reuters that the company expects to make its 10 millionth radar sensor in 2016.
Google’s driverless cars
He also confirmed that Bosch is assisting Google with its driverless car project. It supplies the powertrain and sensors for the tech giant’s 48-strong fleet that are currently being tested in California, US.
The search engine leader has selected Austin, Texas as its latest test driving spot and one of its driverless Lexus sport utility cars is roaming the roads. The car, which has a driver on board, is driving around a few square miles north and northeast of downtown Austin.
Similarly to the UK, Texas has no restrictions regulating autonomous vehicle use or testing. State politicians recently proposed legislation that would encourage driverless car testing with some government oversight but Google and an automotive industry trade group opposed the measure.
The company’s cars have been involved in “14 “minor” accidents since Google began testing self-driving vehicles in 2009, but Google claims each were due to human errors, not the driverless technology.
Bosch is also creating a standardised platform for developers to work on and allow companies to connect to it with their development tools.