The biggest smartphone manufacturer is investing $300 million to its new self-driving cars programme. This looks like a spending spree after they acquired audio pioneer Harman Kardon last year, in exchange of $8 billion. Samsung has big plans for this.
New Bussiness Plan
Samsung is not going to build cars, they are focusing on providing advanced automotive developments to car manufacturers. In August, the California Department of Motor Vehicles granted a self-driving vehicle permit so Samsung can pilot the development stage in California. Samsung also secured a permit in their home country, South Korea. The company will use this permits to start developing their projects.
Last year Samsung acquired Harman Kardon which makes car navigation systems and technology. Samsung will use resources from Harman to make specific technologies for autonomous driving models. Therefore Samsung has created a committee within Harman to oversee the autonomous car business.
The CEO of Harman Kardon said in a press conference, “There is already a high demand for ADAS solutions, and that demand is rapidly growing with the advancements in connected cars and autonomous driving,”.
The Ultimate Goal
The 300 million dollar funding will be an addition to their smart future investments. Like their investments in sensors, connectivity and high-performance computing. As I said before Samsung clearly stated that they are not going to make cars. They will focus on making new smart technologies for cars. As a result, it makes them a direct competitor of googles safe self-driving programme.
Google has invested a whopping $1.1 billion in their self-driving cars programme. As a result Samsungs new $300 million investments look tiny when we compare. Google will do whatever they need to keep their place on top of other automotive development companies.
The self-driving cars have a huge potential. Therefore tech giants are starting their own development process. Google and Apple already had their foot in this emerging market. Like Samsung, we will be seeing other companies following this trend.
Also published on Medium.