Intel Capital to invest $100million in automotive technology

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Intel Capital has announced a $100million investment fund in a bid to help accelerate innovation and the adoption of new technology in the automotive industry.

It is the first global technology investment firm headquartered in Silicon Valley to announce a dedicated focus on automotive technology innovation. The Intel Capital Connected Car Fund will be invested globally over the next four to five years in hardware, software and services companies developing technologies to promote new in vehicle applications. This, believes Intel's investment organisation, will enable a seamless connection between vehicles and any connected device, including mobile devices and sensors. "Technology has become an integral component of everyday life, with consumers demanding uninterrupted access to the Internet and the constant flow of information, news, entertainment, and social media," said Arvind Sodhani, president of Intel Capital and Intel executive vice president. "Automobiles must be able to provide these same consistent and engaging computing experiences, but in a safe manner. The Intel Capital Connected Car Fund will drive the development of technologies to enhance the in-vehicle experience of the future." The company says it plans to provide cars with the intelligence and context awareness to keep drivers and passengers informed, entertained and productive while maintaining optimal safety. Once the car becomes connected, it can also communicate with the cloud, the transportation infrastructure and other vehicles to provide additional services such as advanced driver assistance and real time traffic information. "The car is the ultimate mobile device," said Staci Palmer, general manager of Intel's Automotive Solutions Division. "By 2014, automobiles will be among the top three fastest growing areas for connected devices and Internet content. Intel's experience in developing personal computing, software, security and cloud computing technologies will bring a new level of innovation to the car to enhance the driving experience for both drivers and passengers." Areas of investment for the fund will include technologies that advance the next generation of in vehicle infotainment, advanced driver assistance systems and seamless mobile connectivity. This includes new in vehicle applications and development tools, next generation ADAS technologies and multimodal capabilities such as speech recognition, gesture recognition and eye tracking optimised for the connected car.