Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC) has acquired an expert in Computer Vision algorithms called Itseez Inc. It will join the company’s Internet of Things (IoT) projects to be implemented on self-driving vehicles. The American tech company is transforming from a PC company to a cloud giant.

Devices in the coming future would be using Intel technology to connect between themselves. The company is currently developing a cloud-based autonomous driving system, said Doug Davis, senior vice president and general manager of IoT group.

Intel has acquired an expert in Computer Vision algorithms called Itseez Inc. Photo credit: Zona Movilidad
Intel has acquired an expert in Computer Vision algorithms called Itseez Inc. Photo credit: Zona Movilidad

Americans spend an estimated 75 billion hours per year driving, according to a report issued by Morgan Stanley. The research firm calculates that autonomous cars can provide $1.3 trillion in annual savings to the U.S. economy and $5.6 trillion worldwide.

Itseez Inc. is a company that develops Computer Vision algorithms for specialized hardware in cars and security systems. Intel said it will now gain access to new market segments, interested in processing images into information.

From the smart toothbrush to the autonomous era

The new acquisition will be part of the Intel’s Internet of Things Group (IOTG) roadmap. The latter seeks to create technologies for self-driving vehicles, digital security, surveillance and industrial inspection, said Davis in a statement issued Thursday.

The California-headquartered tech giant said it sees three different stages in the IoT market. The first includes smart everyday objects such as toothbrushes, washing machines, and car seats. The second includes devices connected to the cloud to provide services such as microwaves with screens and smartwatches.

A third stage would include devices in need of “intelligence to make real-time decisions based on their surroundings”. Davis has called it “the autonomous era”, where artificial intelligence would be a requirement for most machines, including cars.

“This is the “autonomous era,” and machine learning and Computer Vision will become critical for all kinds of machines – cars among them. The IoT future we’re building for our customers is exciting, and the talented team at Itseez will help us get there, faster,” said Davis

Intel is expecting to be part of the new era with Itseez

More than 100 research scientists and software engineers are currently working at Itseez laboratories. It has developed technologies for assisting drivers, to offer them lane departure warnings, traffic sign, and pedestrian detection, and forward collision warning.

Intel explained that Computer Vision is capable of processing, analyzing and understanding images, to transform them into decisions and actions. It “is quickly becoming critical for the future of smart and connected things,” added Davis.

For instance, autonomous vehicles, security and medical systems would use Computer Vision. Intel is also working in over-the-air software management for automobiles. Other companies such as Audi, Mercedes-Benz, BMW and Nissan are working on self-driving technologies.

Carmakers headquartered in Detroit would have to share the future of vehicles, alongside tech companies from Silicon Valley. Giants such as Google, IBM, Cisco and probably Apple are also developing autonomous driving softwares.

Source: Intel Press Release