StreetDrone is releasing its new Xenos hardware and software platform, which aims to make any vehicle safely ready for autonomous technology by offering a universal enabler between ‘dumb’ hardware and AV applications, much like Android did for mobile phones.
The company wants to follow the example of Google Android, which made it easy for handset makers to allow their hardware to run the latest third-party applications. Xenos offers a combination of software and hardware that allows different vehicle controllers to communicate with autonomous applications (including AI, self-driving software stacks and remote mission control).
“We’ve been building and testing the on-vehicle version of Xenos for 18 months, built it into the StreetDrone ONE [the company’s Renault Twizy-based AV testbed]and connected various self-driving applications to make it safely autonomous-ready,” said Mike Potts, founder and CEO of StreetDrone. “Our self-driving vehicle functional safety system is the world’s only commercially available system of its kind and ensures that the StreetDrone ONE is safe when running as an autonomous car.”
One of the main targets of the new technology is the mobility service market. To connect unconnected vehicles and manage information flow, the Xenos platform acts as the intermediary between mobility provider and the OEM. It ensures information is not over-shared and each side maintains IP protection while achieving an overall integrated AV technology solution.
Potts explained, “The self-driving world is a lot like the mobile phone market of the mid-2000s. Until Android arrived, phones weren’t running modern apps. It saved handset manufacturers by making phones smart. Xenos allows us to play a similar role – connecting any vehicle to new mobility apps, making them smart, autonomous and networked.
“StreetDrone’s focus and future is in helping connect vehicles into growing mobility networks – such as those offered by Lyft and Uber – by providing the means for vehicle manufacturers to safely make autonomous-ready and connected cars, trucks, buses, tractors or vans.”
StreetDrone is currently seeking multi-million-dollar funding to develop the Xenos platform and accelerate the company’s expansion.
By Illya Verpraet