Connected Car News: Ford, Tesla, moovel, Nuance, Fortellix, Metamoto, Adept Driver, CEVA, BMW, Microsoft & Synopsis

In connected car news this week were Aurora, Blackmore, Ford, Tesla, moovel, Nuance, Fortellix, Metamoto, Adept Driver, CEVA, BMW, Microsoft and Synopsis.

Aurora Buys Blackmore

Chris Ursom-led Aurora Innovation announced would buy Montana-based Blackmore, lidar.

Tesla Limits Super Charging

Telsa is capping super charging  to 80% at busy  super charging station.

Arity Partners with Y-Risk

Arity, a trusted provider of mobility data and analytics solutions,  announced its partnership with Y-Risk to establish a model that improves insurance efficiency for the emerging on-demand and shared economy. Arity and Y-Risk, a brand of The Hartford, will enable shared mobility companies to better manage and understand driving risk so they can work more efficiently with insurance carriers and streamline operational costs.

Innovating in a new industry, shared mobility companies have limited historical data to anticipate risks that cause high operational costs and expensive insurance. Arity and Y-Risk’s partnership helps shared mobility companies address these challenges by providing tools to identify and understand risks to control losses and loss-related costs.

Reach Now’s moovel Buys Validated

moovel (becoming REACH NOW), the leading provider of mobile ticketing solutions in North America, announced Wednesday that it has acquired Validated, a technology platform that allows businesses, universities, retailers and restaurants to subsidize transportation for customers and employees and helps drive retail traffic to brick-and-mortar stores by offering ride subsidies to users of shared mobility services.

Nuance for Geely

Nuance Communications, Inc. announced that its automotive platform provides AI-powered voice recognition for select car models from Geely, China’s fastest-growing automotive manufacturer, in its GKUI smart ecosystem powered by ECARX, a technology company under Geely Group. GKUI is Geely’s innovative digital cockpit system, integrating infotainment, connectivity, and vehicle management into one smart in-car system.

Foretellix and Metamoto Partner to Measure Safety

Foretellix, an Israel-based start-up with a mission to enable measurable safety of autonomous vehicles (AVs), and Metamoto, a provider of enterprise AV simulation solutions, announced a partnership to deliver measurable safety of AVs. The solution combines Foretellix’s Coverage Driven Methodology for comprehensive scenario variance generation and aggregation of coverage across tests and platforms with Metamoto’s highly scalable simulation platform to bring analytics, metrics and confidence to AV testing.

Metamoto’s Simulation as a Service offering complements Foretify with its three components: Director, a scalable, parameterized simulator allowing for tests to run across a spectrum of environmental and hardware parameters and unique edge cases; Designer, a first-of-its-kind tool to custom build parameterized scenarios via a visual editor; and Analyzer, a comprehensive analysis tool to assess how a vehicle performed in specific simulations. The Analyzer tool in particular complements the Foretify analytics and coverage metrics and is often referenced as an autonomous systems debugger

Ford Transforms UAW-Ford Tech Training Center

Ford  the newly transformed UAW-Ford Technical Training Center (TTC), designed to provide state-of-the-art technology training to hourly employees from Ford manufacturing plants.

Ford invested $35 million in the TTC, completely renovating the facility, which is an important move in its efforts to leverage advanced manufacturing and improve operational fitness. The TTC, located in Lincoln Park, Mich., is at the heart of training for UAW-Ford skilled trades apprentices, jobs that are critical in assisting Ford’s already highly efficient plants perform even better.

The skilled trades joint apprenticeship program, which is housed at the TTC, dates back to 1941. Since that time, nearly 30,000 journeypersons have graduated from the program. The UAW-Ford Joint Apprenticeship Program takes between three and four years to complete.

After passing several required courses for entry, acceptance to the Joint Apprenticeship Program is based on employee interest, a measure of employee performance history and their seniority. Once an apprentice is accepted, they must complete a minimum of 576 classroom hours, a minimum of 8,000 shop hours, plus several assessment exams. Employees are paid for their time in the classroom as well as in the plant.

ADEPT Driver & Erie Insurance Teem Up to Help Teen Drivers

ADEPT Driver® and Erie Insurance announced a new partnership to help teen drivers, covered by Erie Insurance policies in Wisconsin and Virginia, reduce their crash risk and save money on auto insurance. Through this partnership, Erie Insurance customers will receive special discounted access to ADEPT’s teenSMART® crash reduction training program and may be eligible for an auto insurance premium reduction upon completion of teenSMART training.


CEVA, Inc. , the leading licensor of signal processing platforms and artificial intelligence processors for smarter, connected devices, announced the availability of its CEVA-SLAM™ software development kit, aimed at streamlining the development of Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM) enabled products, including mobile devices, AR/VR headsets, robots, autonomous vehicles and other camera-based devices. Available for the CEVA-XM family of intelligent vision DSPs and the NeuPro family of AI processors, CEVA-SLAM incorporates the hardware, software and interfaces required to significantly lower the entry barrier for companies looking to integrate efficient SLAM implementations into low-power embedded systems.

BMW’s Intelligent Assistant Based On Azure

The BMW Group ushered in a new era of intelligent voice control with the introduction of the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant in March 2019. BMW’s Open Mobility Cloud powered by Microsoft Azure and the use of artificial intelligence are constantly enhancing the personal assistant’s capabilities.

Microsoft’s Virtual Assistant Solution Accelerator built on Azure provides the necessary technological basis, leveraging Microsoft Azure cloud and AI capabilities such as Bot Framework and Cognitive Services. BMW customers could therefore arrange an appointment at their preferred BMW dealer, for instance, by simply talking with to the personal assistant. The conversation might start with a reminder that the service is due and finish with the BMW Intelligent Personal Assistant arranging the appointment. In the same way, customers would also be able to manage their personal e-mails and calendar appointments during a journey.

The BMW Group and Microsoft development teams in Munich and Seattle are working on a multitude of new skills with the aim of creating an assistant with cross-channel capabilities with whom BMW customers will be able to hold a natural conversation.

Synopsys  and Kudan Partners for SLAM

Synopsys, Inc. and Kudan, a leading simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) software algorithms licensor, announced a collaboration to optimize Kudan’s SLAM computer software algorithms for Synopsys’ DesignWare® ARC® EV6x Embedded Vision Processor IP. Kudan’s KudanSLAM software algorithms create and expand a map of an environment while simultaneously keeping track of the camera’s location within it. SLAM is used in autonomous vehicles, drones, robots, and augmented reality applications for concurrent scene mapping and device localization.

Kudan is optimizing its software to offload and accelerate algorithms by taking advantage of the Synopsys DesignWare ARC EV6x Embedded Vision Processors’ scalable hardware architecture, which includes up to four 512-bit vector DSPs and a fully programmable convolutional neural network (CNN) engine. The combined hardware-software solution enables designers to accelerate the SLAM tasks of tracking and mapping that take input from LiDAR, Time of Flight (TOF) cameras, inertial measurement units (IMUs), or odometry data while consuming significantly less power and memory resources than alternative implementations.

EnSight Parking Launched

A new parking technology company is setting out to shake up the parking industry by revolutionizing parking guidance. Chris Scheppman, president of Access Professional Systems, one of Southern California’s largest and most successful parking technology providers, announced the launch of EnSight Technologies, a new parking guidance technology company. EnSight Technology’s scalable, intelligent camera-based solution is less costly and requires less infrastructure than traditional parking guidance systems.

Rather than mounting parking guidance sensors over individual spaces, EnSight Technologies’ solution relies on intelligent cameras mounted in strategic locations, allowing systems to start simple with total garage occupancy, or scale up with level occupancy, specialty parking, and aisle counts. Data collected by the cameras is transmitted to EnSight’s software, which constantly analyzes car counts to determine how many spaces are available on each floor and communicates the data to dynamic signage located at facility entrances, entrance to each floor, or intermediate wayfinding signage. Because the system utilizes open API software it can easily be integrated with other parking technologies into a powerful parking management suite.

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