Who’s who in the lidar world

Not all automotive and AV companies have turned outside for lidar needs. Some of the most prominent companies have brought efforts to develop and deploy lidar in-house. Here’s a review of those efforts.

Waymo: The company boasts that its internally developed Laser Bear Honeycomb lidar has been vetted in more than 2 million miles of real-world testing. Waymo sells the Laser Bear to others, though it has been tight-lipped on which companies have been using it.

Argo AI: In 2017, Argo AI purchased Princeton Lightwave, a lidar company in New Jersey. A spokesperson for Argo, which is backed by Ford and Volkswagen, said lidar development was proceeding on schedule and there would be more developments in the near future.

Cruise: Also in 2017, General Motors-backed Cruise acquired Strobe to help drive down lidar costs. Cruise co-founder Kyle Vogt is still watching the lidar space, tweeting in January that it was primed for consolidation.

Aurora: In May 2019, Aurora acquired Blackmore, the Montana startup that pioneered frequency-modulated lidar for automotive applications. Now, Aurora says the acquisition has underpinned its emphasis on autonomous trucking, unlocking the ability to detect objects at longer distances.

Mobileye: The company is best known for supplying camera-based computer vision systems. But in January, it said it was developing its own frequency-modulated lidar for use in AVs starting in 2025.

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