Qualcomm extends collaboration with BMW on automated driving systems

Tech giant drives into huge deal with automotive group to develop next generation of autonomous driving and driver-assistance systems

Qualcomm has announced a collaboration with BMW Group to bring in the latest advancements in driver assistance technologies. The news came just as it was announcing at its 2021 Investor Day that it expects its addressable opportunity in the chipset arena to grow from about $100bn today to $700bn in the next decade as more devices become intelligently connected.

BMW Group and Qualcomm Technologies say they will aim to extend their longstanding relationship to deliver safe, smart and sophisticated driving experiences to BMW vehicles. The car maker’s next-generation automated driving (AD) stack will be based on the Snapdragon Ride Platform vision system-on-chip (SoC), vision perception and advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) central compute SoC controllers managed by the Qualcomm Car-2-Cloud services platform.

The BMW Group claims to have been an industry leader in driver assistance innovation for more than two decades. In its quest to continue expanding a broad portfolio of driver assistance systems, it will use Qualcomm Technologies to bring a full spectrum of ADAS/AD functions, including front, rear and surround view camera computer vision in a dedicated computer vision SoC, as well as a high-performance ADAS central compute controller, to host BMW’s drive policy and other planning and driving functions.

“BMW has chosen Qualcomm Technologies as our technology partner and systems solutions provider based on the company’s breadth and depth of portfolio, as well as proven expertise in compute, connectivity, computer vision, advanced semiconductors and driver assistance technologies,” said Nicolai Martin, senior vice-president driving experience at BMW Group. “We look forward to working in direct relationship with Qualcomm Technologies to build our next-generation ADAS/AD platform, as well as to continue delivering world-class driving experiences to our customers.”

Cristiano Amon, president and CEO of Qualcomm Incorporated, added: “Our announcement with BMW today is the onset of a new era in automotive where two technology leaders have come together to design and develop a key element of Snapdragon Digital Chassis for the next-generation automobile. We are very proud of this milestone and cannot wait to bring our jointly designed products onto the road.”

Just as it was revealing the BMW project, Qualcomm’s Investor Day saw Amon claim that the company was at the beginning of one of the largest opportunities in its history, enabling a world where everyone and everything is intelligently connected. “Qualcomm is uniquely positioned to grow across multiple industries in addition to handsets, with a rapidly diversifying business that is not defined by any one single industry or customer,” he said.

Qualcomm provided new three-year financial targets, including an expectation that revenues in its automotive business will grow to about $3.5bn in five years and about $8bn in 10 years. The projections also forecast revenues at Qualcomm CDMA Technologies – which develops and supplies integrated circuits and system software based on 3G/4G/5G and other technologies for use in mobile – to grow at mid-teens CAGR with a 30%+ operating margin by fiscal 2024 and for handset and RF front-end revenues to grow at least in line with a 12% SAM CAGR by fiscal 2024. Qualcomm’s IoT revenues are projected to grow up to $9bn in fiscal 2024.

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