BlackBerry QNX has scored yet another huge autonomous vehicle partnership. NVIDIA announced at CES 2018 this week that it will be using QNX’s safety-certified operating system as the foundation of its AI self-driving development platform.

With its new self-driving platform, NVIDIA is putting an emphasis on the security behind it, calling it the ‘functionally safe AI self-driving development platform’. QNX’s security software for autonomous vehicles is to be the foundation point that NVIDIA will build off of. This self-driving platform is based off of the hardware company’s latest AI technology and GPU-based processing power.

2018 continues to be a big year for the QNX arm of BlackBerry. The company continues to cement itself as a major player in the autonomous vehicle development process, with NVIDIA joining the Chinese search engine giant, Baidu, as the latest company to take advantage of BlackBerry QNX’s safety-certified OS in just the first week and a half of 2018.

“Victories [with BlackBerry QNX] give BlackBerry a second very powerful growth engine to complement our larger enterprise business,” wrote CEO John Chen in a blog post. “The connected transportation future is an opportunity that plays to our historical strengths, that we believe BlackBerry is uniquely positioned to capture, and one where the pace of our progress has visibly accelerated of late.”

BlackBerry’s dive into the automotive industry began when it acquired the Ottawa-based QNX for about $200 million. While it may have seemed like BlackBerry only became a major player in the automotive industry in late 2016 when it announced a major partnership with Ford, in early 2017 BlackBerry COO Marty Beard told CDN that as of the beginning of 2017 BlackBerry software was in roughly 250 automakers.

At the same time as the Ford deal, BlackBerry QNX also opened a new Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Centre in Ottawa with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

BlackBerry QNX then finished 2017 strong with five partnerships announced in the second half of the year:

  • September 2017: Partnership with Delphi (now Aptiv), one of the largest Tier1 automotive suppliers, to make the BlackBerry QNX OS the foundation of Aptiv’s autonomous drive platform.
  • October 2017: Partnership with another global Tier1 automotive supplier, Yanfeng Visteon, to power its next-gen digital instrument cluster.
  • November 2017: Partnered with global design and technology services company, Tata Elxsi, to design and develop secure, mission-critical solutions in the automotive, industrial, medical, and network communication industries using QNX technology.
  • December 2017: Announced an agreement with Qualcomm to use QNX’s software with Qualcomm hardware platforms in virtual cockpit controllers (VCC), telematics, electronic control gateways, digital instrument clusters, and infotainment systems.
  • December 2017: Partnered with Denso and Intel to create a integrated human machine interface (HMI) platform. This allows each HMI in a connected car to be treated as a standalone system, ensuring that while each system can interact, they will not directly impact one another’s performance.


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