Tesla Motors – the electric car making giant – is getting closer to making its own chip for managing self-driving tasks in its electric vehicles with the cooperation of AMD. According to a person familiar with the matter, the electric car making company has already received samples of the first implementation of its processor and is currently running tests on it.
Share value of AMD rises after this new surfaces on media
The automaker is trying to be vertically integrated and decrease reliance on other companies and its recent venture to build its own chip is along the same line. However, according to the source, the electric car making is not doing the development of the A.I. chip alone. The automaker will build the chip on top of AMD intellectual property. After news site CNBC reported the news of AMD working with Tesla to make A.I. chips, the shares of chip making company AMD rose.
The shares of the company’s stock closed nearly 5% higher and are continuing to hike after hours. On Wednesday, at the technology conference of the company in Santa Clara, California, Sanjay Jha, the CEO of AMD spin-off and chip fabricator GlobalFoundries, talked about the automaker being an example of companies that are working with fabricators.
The AMD spinoff that fabricates chips has a wafer supply agreement in place with AMD through 2020, according to CNBC. GlobalFoundries said in a statement that the company is not commenting on customers or prospective customers. He further denied that the company was directly working with the automaker.
Tesla hired ex-AMD executive recently to lead its Autopilot hardware unit
This year, Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, promised that capability will be available to consumers in 2019. When @TEDchris asked on @Tesla autonomy, “How long until you can get in your car, fall asleep, and wake up at your destination?” Musk answered, “2 years.”
The silicon project of the automaker is continuing under the leadership of Jim Keller, the chip architect and head of Autopilot hardware and software. Keller, who joined the electric car maker is early 2017 after two stints at Apple and AMD, has been the head since the departure of Chris Lattner – Apple veteran – in June. The source told that more than 50 people are currently working on the initiative under Keller. After hiring Keller, the electric carmaker has brought on several AMD veterans as well, including system circuit design lead Dan Bailey, principal hardware engineer Bill McGee and director Ganesh Venkataramanan. AMD refused to comment. The automaker said that it would not talk on speculation and rumors.