On Wednesday, tech giant Intel completed the purchase of Israeli autonomous technology firm Mobileye, and announced that they would have a fleet of fully self-driving vehicles available by the end of the year.
Less than 24 hours after closing the $15 billion deal to buy Mobileye, Intel has said it will distribute autonomous vehicles later this year for testing in Europe, Israel and the USA.
The end goal, Mobileye co-founder Amnon Shashua says, is “to develop autonomous vehicle technology that can be deployed anywhere”.
The Intel fleet will include a variety of vehicles and will utilise Mobileye’s progress made in computer vision, mapping and sensing.
Intel, who are renowned for their production of computer chips, have said that the vehicles would provide “level 4” autonomy, which is classed under industry standards as a “high” level of autonomy, just below the fully automated level 5.
A number of major car manufacturers and several other technology firms have been increasing research efforts in the field of autonomous driving in recent years, arguing that these systems will eliminate the vast majority of road accidents.
Rival tech firms Apple and Google both have testing permits in California and claim to also be very close to rolling out new cars for testing, and Elon Musk’s Tesla boasts that all its models are built with the hardware for self-driving in event that regulators give the technology a green light.