Intel signalled its intention to be part of the growing autonomous driving market, acquiring Mobileye for $15.3 billion. Mobileye is an Israeli firm which provides software for Advanced Driver Assist Systems (ADAS).
Intel estimates the self-driving or autonomous vehicle industry to be valued at $70 billion by 2030, making this a strategic investment. Mobileye already has a collaboration with BMW and Intel to develop production ready self-driven cars by 2021.
Mobileye uses proprietary software to enhance safety features for vehicles. This system, termed EyeQ utilises 360-degree sensors to warn drivers and take preemptive action, if required. Mobileye software currently ensures that vehicles stay in their lane, maintaining the required distance between other cars/vehicles.
Over 300 car models are already equipped with Mobileye hardware, enhancing overall safety. It has also retrofitted over 4,000 trucks with this hardware.
Founded in 1999, Mobileye has over 600 employees. In addition to BMW, it has also collaborated with Volkswagen for on-road data technology.
Intel, will hope that this deal paves the way to a billion-dollar industry. The company, had in the past let go of an opportunity to manufacture chips for the iPhone, which competitors like ARM took advantage of.
With companies like Google and Uber already in the race to develop fully autonomous vehicles, Intel is betting big on Mobileye. Stocks of Mobileye were up by 28% following this move.