TomTom, a digital mapping and routing company today announced about the acquisition of a Berlin-based self-driving startup Autonomos. The company presently provides data to companies like Uber and Apple alongwith its own navigation and mapping products. It now looks forward to establish its presence in autonomous driving with the recently acquired startup.
Autonomos was established back in 2012, to offer research and development consultancy services for automated vehicle assistance systems. The technologies developed and designed by the venture includes full demonstration-level autonomous driving software stack, 3D sensor technology as well as digital image processing. The founders have worked towards autonomous driving research projects for past few years.
Harold Goddijn, CEO and Co-founder of TomTom, expressed his views on the acquisition saying,
This is an important development for TomTom as it will help us to continue to strengthen our capabilities for the future of driving and expand our knowledge and expertise, this is an important development for TomTom as it will help us to continue to strengthen our capabilities for the future of driving and expand our knowledge and expertise.
Though no details regarding the procurement has been released by the company, the human assets of Autonomos will enhance TomTom’s product range. They will be equipping them with HD maps, RoadDNA localisation technology, navigation, traffic and other cloud services for a sound autonomous driving.
Tinosch Ganjineh, CEO of Autonomos commented upon the matter as,
We are proud to have been selected by the world leader in map making for bringing autonomous driving together to the next level, TomTom’s technology combined with our intelligent driving know-how are a perfect match to make the dream of self-driving cars become a reality.
With the world racing to completely hack the self driving technology with major names such as Google, Uber, Volkswagen, Nissan etc, it was necessary for TomTom to be backed by Autonomos’ expertise in the field. The company has previously built vehicles for the DARPA Grand Challenge competitions. It has also worked on projects entailing cars that are controlled by the human brain, by an iPhone, by eyes as well as have driven around traffic in Berlin and operated as a taxi.
In the past months, TomTom also launched its first global state-of-the-art Innovation Hub in Pune spread across over 1,000 square feet of workspace. The planning and plotting in the field of self-driving is second in the line after the recent Innovation Hub. It is a move towards diversifying the company’s operations.
Despite the company’s partnerships with Uber and Apple, TomTom is also engaged in incorporating its own GPS technology into the to-be-made self driven cars. For the same, TomTom has detailed around 200,000 kilometers of roads in the U.S, France and Germany with HAD maps, a 3-D automated driving mapping technology.