Business News: AI + Automotive Research on the Rise, New M&As, & More

May 11, 2018 | 00:00
R&D in exciting new areas, from AI-based automotive technologies to the Internet of Plants, is creating lucrative opportunities for blue-chip companies and startups alike. Let's review several of the more important electronics industry news stories from the past few days.

Increasing AI + Automotive R&D
The automated Mobility as a Service (MaaS) market is expected to be $120 billion by 2025. And as demand for AI-based automotive applications and features increases, high-tech companies will respond by allocating more money and brain power to R&D. In recent weeks, we’ve learned about a several companies that are investing in AI-based automotive technologies. For instance, Infineon recently announced a new R&D center in Dresden that will employ 100 researchers focused on automotive AI. In early May, GM said its R&D team was using cloud computing and AI-based algorithms to develop efficient, light-weight, low-emissions vehicles. And just days ago, Google renamed its Google Research division to Google AI.
Espressif Hits 100 Million IoT Chip Mark
Espressif recently announced that it has shipped 100 million Internet of Things chips. The news comes just a few weeks after the company reported on the success of it ESP32 Design Contest, which it jointly organized with Elektor. Learn More
Researchers Developing an Internet of Plants
Researchers at the Technical University of Delft in the Netherlands are developing an Internet of Plants. The university’s Plantenna program is using sensor technology to collect information inside plants and their surroundings. The collected data can be used for a variety of purposed, including for climate monitoring, crop planning, and irrigation control. Learn More
M&A News
Adesto Technologies has acquired Dublin, Ireland-based S3 Semiconductors, which supplies RF and mixed-signal ASICs, for approximately $35 million. Chip-equipment vendor Cohu is buying Xcerra, a Norwood, MA-based company that offers a wide range of products to the semiconductor and PCB test markets, for $796 million. ON Semiconductor has purchased SensL Technologies, which is a Cork, Ireland-based developer of silicon photomultipliers, SPAD arrays and measurement instruments.
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