Alibaba teams up with Xpeng for driverless car software center

By Tejaswita Tiwari  | Date: 2022-08-03

Alibaba teams up with Xpeng for driverless car software center

E-commerce giant, Alibaba has reportedly joined forces with electric vehicle (EV) startup Xpeng to open a computing center for training software for driverless cars.

Apparently, in order to train the algorithm for autonomous driving systems, large amounts of data are needed to be processed. Xpeng has thus stated that the novel computing center will cut down on training time for its main autonomous driving model from 7 days to under one hour.

Notably, the firm, which is headquartered in Guangzhou, will be utilizing Alibaba’s cloud technology for its computing requirements. The center, named Fuyao, will be in the Inner Mongolia region around northern China.

Alibaba, a stakeholder in Xpend, has been working on advancing its cloud computing division as its main e-commerce business witnesses a slowdown. The partnership also indicates how most Chinese technology giants are trying to enter the rapid-growing electric vehicle space.

For the record, this move is also significant for Xpeng which has been racing to be the leader in the highly competitive EV market in the country, rivaling EV majors Tesla and BYD.

Leading Chinese startups like Nio and Xpeng are also eyeing autonomous driving features to take over the giants.

Xpeng offers an advanced driver-assistance system (ADAS), known as XPILOT, installed in a few of its cars, to render users some autonomous features like automatic lane switching.

Previously, in 2021, the startup introduced a navigation-guided pilot, called City NGP, which allows Xpeng’s vehicles to switch lanes, overtake cars, speed up or slow down, as well as exit and enter highways.

Initially, the system was rolled out for highways but has since been updated for cities as well.

For the unversed, Xpeng has been trying to position itself as a tech firm instead of an automotive manufacturer, while inking investments in other areas like flying passenger drones and robotics.

Regulators in China have also been encouraging autonomous driving technology, with many cities allowing the testing for domestic driverless car firms as well as the launching of robotaxi services.

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Tejaswita Tiwari

Tejaswita Tiwari

Being born in a family of readers, Tejaswita has always had a natural flair for writing, using that enthusiasm to become a full-fledged writer after earning her MBA in Marketing. Her insatiable curiosity to learn about various verticals has made her a popular research...

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