The growing demand for in-car technology has meant the car industry has had to react faster and reduce lead times in recent years, similar to smartphone producers. Anderson said: “That’s been a trend for the last ten years, with technology companies being pulled in.
“The idea of Samsung as a technology company is so exciting to car manufacturers that they’re coming to see what we can do. We are leaders in all the business areas we touch. We didn’t create the first smartphone, but we quickly followed that trend and became a leader, as we have in consumer electronics, fridges, washers, dryers and TVs.
“What Samsung is doing in the automotive industry is bringing that breadth of capability, both in terms of engineering prowess and sheer manufacturing capability. That’s going to be a disruptive moment in the industry.”
Cars running Drvline with up to Level 4 autonomy (‘mind- off’, whereby the driver can turn their attention away from controlling the car) are currently testing on the road in Korea and California. The first product from the new system is likely to be a forward-facing autonomous braking camera, which Anderson said should go into production in 2020.
AUTONOMOUS PRETENDERS: FOUR MORE FIRMS AIMING TO DEVELOP SELF-DRIVING TECH:
Aptiv - The automotive parts specialist, created when Delphi Automotive spun off its aftermarket business into Delphi Technologies and rebranded, has been working with ride-sharing firm Lyft on autonomous technology, and displayed self-driving BMW taxis at CES earlier this year.
Nvidia - A manufacturer of computer graphics chips, Nvidia is now developing an autonomous driving platform called Nvidia Drive. It includes a bespoke computer processor for self-driving vehicles. Nvidia has so far secured deals with Volkswagen, Chery, Baidu, Aurora and Uber.
Continental Automotive - Perhaps best known for its tyres, the German automotive parts firm is investing in connected car and autonomous technology, highlighted by the launch of a self-driving concept vehicle called BEE (Balance Economy and Ecology). It is aiming to partner with car companies.
Aurora Innovation - The small Silicon Valley start-up has secured deals to develop autonomous driving technology for the Volkswagen Group, Hyundai and Byton. The deals have a lot to do with one of its founders: Chris Urmson, former head of Google’s self-driving car programme.
￼SAMSUNG'S AUTOMOTIVE HISTORY
Samsung isn’t entirely new to the automotive game: the conglomerate founded its own car firm, Samsung Motors, in 1994. Its first cars, largely badge-engineered Nissans, went on sale in 1998. But by that point the Asian financial crisis had hit, and the bankrupt Samsung Corporation sold 80.1% of its motor division to Renault for £350m. Samsung Card, the group’s credit card division, still owns the remaining 19.9%.