Elon Musk has revealed that Tesla is working on its very own hardware chips that’ll support the AI software of its self-driving vehicles.
Musk made the revelation on the sidelines of the world’s largest AI conference, claiming that the carmaker will be able to achieve full autonomy far faster if it uses dedicated AI hardware designed in-house.
“We are developing customized AI hardware chips. We get there faster if we have dedicated AI hardware,” Musk said to Wired.
During a speech to roughly 200 attendees, the entrepreneur spoke alongside Tesla’s director of AI, Andrej Karparthy, and vice president in charge of Autopilot hardware, Jim Keller. During his speech, Musk said Tesla cares greatly about the future of AI. He also said that despite previously sounding the alarm bell about the dangers of AI, “I also think there are things where AI can really be useful, well before you get to godlike uber intelligence.”
While most carmakers developing autonomous driving systems are using experienced chip makers to build their necessary hardware, Jim Keller said there is nothing on the market that suits Tesla’s current mixture of sensors.
“You can get something a lot better if you really design what you want,” he said.
According to Musk, Tesla’s upcoming AI chip will match the performance of existing alternatives but consume a tenth of the power and cost a tenth of the price.