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[240514] #Motional #Tesla #Waymo

By 2024년 05월 14일No Comments

Vueron Newsletter

No. 115


Related Company
Autonomous Driving
Motional cut about 550 employees, around 40%, in recent restructuring, sources say
AEye Announces Partnership with Leading Automotive Electronics and Vision Solutions Provider, LITEON
Autonomous Driving, LiDAR
Tesla secretly spent $2 million on this technology
Autonomous Driving
Waymo robotaxis surpass 50,000 weekly paid trips
Quanergy Ushers in New Era of 3D LiDAR Solutions to Achieve Projected 300% YoY Growth

1. Motional cut about 550 employees, around 40%, in recent restructuring, sources say

  • Motional is pausing commercial operations and delaying its robotaxi service until 2026.
  • The layoffs affect every team, including high-level departures like the COO.
  • Several offices, including those in Milpitas and Venice, are being shut down.
  • Teams affected include technical program management, high-performance computing, and remote vehicle assistance.
  • Most layoffs occurred in Pittsburgh, with many employees working on software.
  • Despite some teams being unaffected, Motional aims to streamline its operations and focus on core technology.
  • The company acknowledges the contributions of departing employees.
  • Motional’s future was uncertain due to Aptiv reducing its ownership interest.
    Hyundai recently invested $475 million in Motional.
  • Laid-off employees will receive paychecks for 10 weeks, with additional bonuses.
  • Equity payouts for vested employees are pending valuation.

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Motional’s layoffs indicate challenges in the autonomous vehicle industry, with companies struggling to sustain high spending. Motional’s emphasis on retaining departing employees until July 6 and handling equity payouts reflects a commitment to its workforce despite the layoffs.

2. AEye Announces Partnership with Leading Automotive Electronics and Vision Solutions Provider, LITEON

  • AEye CEO Matt Fisch expressed strong confidence in the newly formed partnership with LITEON, emphasizing LITEON’s extensive experience, innovative spirit, and industrialization capabilities in providing solutions to the automotive ADAS (Advanced Driver-Assistance Systems) market.
  • LITEON, a globally recognized leader in electronic solutions for automotive OEMs, boasts over four decades of expertise in the automotive electronics industry. 
  • Specializing in optoelectronics and power management, LITEON serves major Tier 1 suppliers and OEMs across Europe and North America, offering a comprehensive range of services from design to manufacturing.
  • The collaboration between AEye and LITEON signifies a strategic alignment aimed at introducing AEye’s cutting-edge 4Sight solution to the automotive market. 
  • AEye’s 4Sight platform, characterized by its software-defined lidar technology, enables advanced driver-assistance, vehicle autonomy, smart infrastructure, and logistics applications, ultimately contributing to enhanced safety and performance in transportation.
  • AEye’s 4Sight Intelligent Sensing Platform, equipped with an adaptive sensor-based operating system, prioritizes speed, accuracy, and reliability in delivering crucial information for dynamic applications. 
  • This platform, coupled with AEye’s 4Sight products, is well-suited for applications requiring precise measurement imaging to ensure optimal safety and performance.
  • LITEON, established in 1975 and renowned as a pioneer of LED technology in Taiwan, has expanded its scope over the years to encompass various sectors, including computing, auto electronics, 5G, and AIoT (Artificial Intelligence of Things).

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AEye’s focus on software-defined lidar technology, in conjunction with LITEON’s expertise in optoelectronics and power management, presents a promising avenue for delivering enhanced safety and performance in automotive applications.

3. Tesla secretly spent $2 million on this technology

  • Tesla, led by CEO Elon Musk, has historically criticized lidar technology, with Musk referring to it as a “crazy idea.”
  • Despite this criticism, Tesla spent approximately $2 million on lidar technology, as reported by Luminar in a quarterly earnings report.
  • Luminar, a lidar maker, stated that Tesla was its largest customer in the last quarter, contributing over 10% of its total revenue.
  • Lidar, short for Light Detection and Ranging, utilizes light pulses to measure distance and generate a 3D map of the surrounding environment.
  • Lidar is commonly employed in electric vehicles, particularly in autonomous driving and driver assistance systems, to detect and navigate through the vehicle’s surroundings.

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The discrepancy between Tesla’s outspoken criticism of lidar and its substantial investment in the technology raises questions about Tesla’s strategic direction and utilization of lidar technology within its vehicles. Despite Musk’s skepticism, Tesla’s expenditure on lidar suggests a potential shift in the company’s stance or a recognition of the technology’s value in certain applications.

4. Waymo robotaxis surpass 50,000 weekly paid trips

  • Waymo, Alphabet’s autonomous vehicle subsidiary, announced via social media that its robotaxis are completing over 50,000 paid trips weekly in San Francisco, Phoenix, and Los Angeles.
  • Waymo has been operating its robotaxis without human drivers for several years, allowing passengers to experience autonomous rides without any human supervision.
  • The service is gaining popularity among a diverse user base, with people utilizing it for various purposes, such as carefree travel, gaining independence, and reclaiming their commute.
  • Despite its success, Waymo faces challenges on public roads, including criticism for perceived threats to the traditional taxi industry and occasional disruptive behavior by its vehicles.
  • Waymo’s main competitor, General Motors-backed Cruise, has faced difficulties leading to the suspension of its self-driving activities and layoffs, while Waymo claims improvements in road safety based on data collected by its self-driving cars.
  • Waymo has recorded over one million rider-only trips across four cities, indicating growing acceptance and use of autonomous ride-hailing services among the general population.

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Waymo’s achievement of completing over 50,000 paid trips weekly highlights the increasing adoption of autonomous ride-hailing services and signifies progress towards mainstream acceptance of autonomous vehicles. The milestone of recording over one million rider-only trips underscores the significant milestone in the autonomous transportation industry and indicates a shift towards embracing autonomous ride-hailing services as a viable mobility option.

5. Quanergy Ushers in New Era of 3D LiDAR Solutions to Achieve Projected 300% YoY Growth

  • Quanergy Solutions, Inc. has shifted its focus exclusively to physical security and business intelligence applications, leveraging its 3D LiDAR solutions.
  • Quanergy’s 3D LiDAR technology provides real-time data for threat detection and anomaly identification with high precision and range in various environments.
  • The company has introduced new-generation sensors to track people and vehicles across different security zones, enhancing security and operational efficiency.
  • Quanergy forecasts significant growth, with projections exceeding 3 million sensors and approximately $6 billion USD in revenue by 2030, as per an independent study by ABI Research.
  • The company expects year-over-year growth of approximately 300% in fiscal 2024, supported by the expansion of its product offering and sales and marketing operations in the U.S., EU, and APAC regions.
  • Quanergy’s CEO, Enzo Signore, emphasizes the need for advanced security solutions to address sophisticated threats while improving operational efficiency, highlighting the cost-effectiveness and accuracy of Quanergy’s LiDAR solutions.
  • There is increasing market demand for cost-efficient and accurate Perimeter Intrusion Detection (PID) solutions, driving interest in Quanergy’s 3D LiDAR technology across various industries, including critical infrastructure, corporate enterprises, warehousing, and logistics.
  • Quanergy’s 3D LiDAR has been deployed in projects such as Enterprise Security Risk Management (ESRM) at San Jose Water and through a partnership with Convergint for physical security solutions.
  • The company aims to help global customers benefit from the power of 3D LiDAR technology and enhance security measures worldwide.

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Quanergy’s strategic shift towards physical security and business intelligence applications reflects the growing demand for advanced technology solutions to address security challenges. The company’s focus on 3D LiDAR technology positions it as a leader in providing high-precision and cost-effective security solutions, catering to diverse industries and applications.

*Contents above are the opinion of ChatGPT, not an individual nor company


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