Self-Driving cars – new Apple CarPlay & Sony senses sensor profits

caplayRecently, two new players were revealed in the race for self-driving cars– iPhone, iPad and computer-maker Apple and electronics-maker Sony.

An Apple in Every Car?

Apple is reportedly working on software for self-driving cars and talking to experts at carmakers as well as auto suppliers. According to “industry sources” Apple is not just designing software or components but an entire car. Apple is getting opinions on production methods, for electric and connected cars, while studying autonomous driving.

Apparently, the industrial design team includes former employees of European automakers. Apple vans with sensors on them have been seen in the Silicon Valley.

First Apple will release connected and partially autonomous cars.

The Wall Street Journal on Friday reported that Apple is working on in a secret lab on on an electric car code named Titan, with several hundred employees near Cupertino, CA.

Two different sources told Reuters that Apple tried to recruit auto industry robotics experts.

Sony No Car Baloney?

In Japan, Sony has invested $842,000 in Japanese robotics company ZMP to develop self-driving automobiles, using Sony sensors and ZMP robotic engineering. Self-driving cars will need as many as 10 cameras.

Although Sony has lost market share in TVs and smartphones, it still holds a lead in image-sensors that make digital camera work. Sony plans to expand its image sensor business in 2017-2013.

“We have to be number one in automotive sensors” by the time self-driving cars are expected to hit the roads in early to mid-2020s, said Shigeo Ohba, general manager of Sony’s image sensor business.

Google is working on an autonomous LSV. Many automakers working on autonomous cars, Audi, BMW, Ford, Mercedes-Benz and researchers.

By 2020, there will be 250m connected vehicles on the world’s roads, according to estimates from Gartner, Inc.