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118th partner, BMW joins Baidu Apollo to serve China market

Monika From Gasgoo| July 10 , 2018

BMW Baidu cooperation, BMW autonomous driving, China automotive news

Shanghai (Gasgoo)- German premium automaker BMW Group and Chinese Internet giant Baidu signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on July 10, under which the BMW Group will join the Apollo, Baidu's open autonomous driving platform.

The partnership was officially formed during Chinese Premier Li Keqiang's visit to Germany to meet with German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Under the newly-signed MoU, both companies will join forces to provide safe, convenient and smart mobility services for consumers in China.

The BMW Group is developing an autonomous driving platform that works on technology solutions covering Level 2 (advanced driving assistance system) to Level 5 (fully autonomous driving). Meanwhile, the group has teamed up with many technology and OEM partners, who contribute their expertise, resources and intellectual property assets to the platform development.

Launched in July, 2017, Baidu's Apollo provides an open, reliable and secure software platform for its partners to develop their own autonomous driving systems through on-vehicle and hardware platforms. On July 4, Baidu unveiled the latest iteration of the Apollo platform dubbed Apollo 3.0 at the Baidu Create 2018 and enlarged the number of its partners to 116 worldwide across both automotive and technology industries at the same time.

Zhang Yaqin, president of Baidu, said that “BMW Group and Baidu have been actively exploring the ICV realm and are well-matched in the vision for the autonomous driving future. We hope that the deepened collaboration will provide China's consumers with intelligent and comfortable product experience. We aim to speed up the development of autonomous driving technologies that meet demands of Chinese market.”

At the CES Asia 2018, BMW China and Baidu signed an agreement on June 14 to cooperate in home-to-vehicle field and explore the new-generation human-vehicle interaction modes.

According to the agreement, BMW and Baidu will jointly provide such intelligent services that enable users to access vehicle information by voice control and operates relevant functions easily from their home. For instance, users can control ventilation, check fuel levels and lock their vehicle doors by delivering remote instructions. In addition, users can search for mobility information stored in cloud, plan routes and arrange departure times in advance. The voice control function can be activated simply using certain wake-up words.

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