Automotive giants BMW and Toyota along with insurance company Allianz have inked a deal for data sharing with Silicon Valley based technology start-up, Nauto. As per the deal, the automakers and Allianz will license technology from Nauto to develop autonomous driving technologies for their cars. Nauto is a technology start-up that makes use of cameras along with artificial intelligence systems to understand driver behaviour in cars. The technology can be used to develop safer and more efficient self driving autonomous cars.
Speaking about the deal, Stefan Heck, Chief Executive Officer, Nauto said, “the carmakers and insurer will integrate the technology into their test vehicles and use the aggregate and anonymized data – whether on driving habits, difficult intersections, or traffic congestion – to help develop their autonomous vehicle strategies.” The deal is a step forward by Toyota Research Institute, BMWi Ventures and Allianz Ventures to provide smart autonomous systems in the global auto industry to improve driver and vehicle safety. The new technology will also help in developing self-driving cars. While the particulars of the deal were not disclosed, Nauto has revealed that each company will have equity stake in the company along with an unspecified auto maker.
Nauto's system uses a windshield mounted devices that makes use of a camera along with a computer based vision system and artificial intelligence to gather and process data to improve driver behaviour. The system helps detect drunk driving as well as texting while driving, thereby notifying drivers to refrain from performing unwanted activities. On the other hand, this system also helps insurance companies to prevent frauds by keeping a check on the drivers.
In the long run, Nauto plans to integrate its systems with OEM car manufactures by installing their software product in production cars while the driver related data will be stored on a cloud based network that can be accessed remotely to provide safer solutions for the driver as well as passengers. This data can be further processed and used by carmakers while developing self driving autonomous vehicles. Furthermore, Stefan Heck also revealed that OEM car manufacturers can build their own technology with the uses of Nauto's technological systems.