The autonomous driving market has been a bit of a disappointment so far. The fact is that building effective AI systems has proven quite challenging. If anything, the lower-than-expected valuation on Waymo is a sign of this.
So then what are the other implications of the recent funding? To answer this, I reached out to Dave Mawhinney, who is the Executive Director of the Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship at Carnegie Mellon University. Here’s what he had to say:
What does this deal mean for autonomous driving?
The $2.25 billion outside investment in Waymo is continuing the validation of the Autonomous Vehicle (AV) industry. While we are still years away from Level 5 Full Automation, every major player in the automotive industry is making serious bets. In Pittsburgh alone, three Carnegie Mellon AV companies (Waymo is too), UberATG, ArgoAI, and Aurora Innovations have over $7.5 billion of committed capital. This massive investment in AV is akin to the investment in industries like steel that we saw during the Industrial Revolution.