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TomTom wants to be leader in autonomous driving development

Satellite navigation device maker TomTom, has purchased an autonomous vehicle developer. The Berlin based startup is aptly named, Autonomous and has previously provided research and development consultancy services for a number of automated vehicle systems around the world.

Although TomTom is most well known for its navigational systems, it has also put a lot of time and monetary expenditure into developing mapping technologies. Those go hand in hand with navigation, but have also been used to help develop certain autonomous systems. With the acquisition of Autonomous, TomTom looks set to become much more entrenched in the fledgling industry.

Autonomous was originally established in 2012 and has since provided assistance to companies in the fields of 3D sensor technology, autonomous software development, digital image processing and autonomous research projects. The team at Autonomous is expected to help TomTom further develop its map-based products further, as well as produce new autonomous driving applications.

“This is an important development for TomTom as it will help us to continue to strengthen our capabilities for the future of driving and expand our knowledge and expertise,” said Harold Goddijn, CEO and co-founder of TomTom. “With this deal we are further positioning ourselves as one of the leaders in autonomous driving.”

No details about the acquisition price have been confirmed, though we may learn more in earnings reports for this quarter when they are released in the next few months.

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KitGuru Says: It makes sense for companies who have previously augmented human drivers, to look to do the same for autonomous systems. They will be left out in the cold otherwise. 

Image source: Karlis Dambrans/Flickr

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