According to the Wall Street Journal, Verizon just joined a $10 million investment round in Renovo Auto, the autonomous vehicle startup that became famous after turning a vintage DeLorean into a self-driving vehicle.
Founded in 2010, this California-based company builds technology that combines self-driving software, safety systems, and data analytics. The company’s many sensors can supposedly generate multiple terabytes of data each hour, even in the most extreme environments.
Verizon has made several acquisitions dealing with the telematics industry, which is a quickly expanding sector focusing on making autonomous cars more efficient and roadworthy. For autonomous vehicles to become a mainstream reality, high-end internet is needed, which is an area where Verizon specializes and is the current market leader.
The Wall Street Journal states that a normal autonomous vehicle produces 4 terabytes of data within 90 minutes, which is equal to 3,000 people’s internet usage during a three-year timespan.
Big moves by the wireless carrier
Last year, Verizon acquired a GPS vehicle trucking specialist, Fleetmatics, as well as Telogis, which is a cloud-based software firm. Once these deals were completed, it was reported that Verizon had launched to a top spot in the telematics market worldwide, controlling close to a quarter of it.
Verizon also wants to boost its role in advertising markets. The company’s acquisitions of AOL and Yahoo will be in direct competition with Google and Facebook, the two dominant players in the blossoming digital advertising industry.