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Microsoft Azure to power Baidu driverless innovation

Microsoft Azure to power Baidu driverless innovation

Within the partnership, Microsoft will be offering cloud infrastructure services via Azure for customers in markets outside China looking to adopt Apollo, described by Baidu as an open, "Android of autonomous driving industry".

Baidu announced the Apollo open platform concept to help create a massive, overarching, safe, and, dependable group dedicated to effectively bringing self-driving vehicle technology to the world. The project boasts partners from just about every corner of the auto and tech industries, from major players like Intel, Nvidia, Bosch, Delphi, Daimler, and Ford to smaller companies like Grab and other Asian affiliates.

'By using Azure, our partners outside of China will have access to a trustworthy and secure public cloud, enabling them to focus on innovating instead of building their own cloud-based infrastructure, ' said Ya-Qin Zhang, president of Baidu.

Automotive companies such as BMW, Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) and Toyota Motor Corp (ADR) (NYSE:TM) now work with Microsoft to utilize its cloud tech in order to help with predictive maintenance, voice-controls, and driver assistance features.

Microsoft's cloud will soon be casting its shadow over self-driving cars powered by Baidu's Project Apollo.




According to McKinsey, up to 15 percent of new cars sold in 2030 will be fully autonomous, [1] which fuels the need for an ecosystem of partners to collaborate in support of a common goal.

Microsoft said Tuesday that it will join the growing list of companies taking part in an autonomous driving technology project led by Chinese search engine company Baidu.

"Today's vehicles already have an impressive level of sophistication when it comes to their ability to capture data", said Kevin Dallas, a corporate vice-president at Microsoft. The Apollo alliance was established in April this year and aims to provide an open platform for the automotive industry to advance the development of autonomous vehicles.

Rather than develop its own self-driving vehicle, Microsoft has been playing to its strength in software by working with automotive companies on systems for turning the massive amounts of data from sensors into "actionable intelligence".


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