GM to Buy Sensor-Tech Firm Strobe to Speed Up Self-Driving Car Push

October 10th, 2017

Via: Reuters:

No. 1 U.S. automaker General Motors Co (GM.N) said on Monday it would buy Strobe Inc, which uses LIDAR technology to help self-driving cars identify objects at a distance, to speed up development of autonomous vehicles and slash sensor costs.

LIDAR is one of the major sensor technologies used in autonomous, or self-driving vehicles, and there is fierce competition between large automakers to bring the cars to market first.

Fully self-driving vehicles are expected to hit the market in a limited form by around 2020. GM and its U.S. rival Ford Motor Co (F.N) have both publicly stated that they aim to have fully self-driving cars on sale by 2021.

”This acquisition is a game changer for GM and Cruise,“ because of the cost savings it will bring,” Kyle Vogt, chief executive of GM’s Cruise Automation unit, said.

“We’ve made this acquisition because we aim to speed our path to market,” he added.

Strobe’s new microchip LIDAR system would significantly enhance the capabilities of the self-driving cars GM was developing, Vogt said in a blog post and on a conference call with reporters.

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