Baidu has clearly gone from just an Internet search company, to one of the bigger think tanks in the world, and it clearly has the capital and brains to do that. Reports on Tuesday came out, and all circle around Baidu possibly coming out with a self driving car in 2015, to compete against Google and Apple.
The self driving car has been something played around with by tech companies, and Google and Apple are at the front of this research. Now, Baidu’s Robin Li stated in Beijing, that the company has been speaking with car makers, and is in the process of introducing one as early as this year.
What Baidu Said
As with any large speech given by a CEO, its important to dissect the speech as to what was said. In his speech at the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, Robin Li stated that Baidu has been researching the smart car. Additionally, they have been working with car manufacturers as well.
No specific auto manufacturers were spoken of during his talk, and many wonder why he would say such a thing at this time. In China, the Technology and Industry stated that he encouraged auto companies to team up with teach companies, and this could be another spark in the talk of a self driving car from Baidu.
Does Baidu Need A Self Driving Car?
Baidu clearly has a self interest when it comes to a self-driving car in China. It has large data centers that the car can get data from, track, and feed updates too. Additionally, Baidu has a large stockpile of money to spend on this project, and China has a large set of millionaires ready for this car.
Baidu also knows that Google and Apple are in this market, and cannot be far behind them as well. Google is clearly in front, Apple has been talked about researching it, and Baidu’s entrance in this market is new. China has a big auto market, and with a Baidu backbone, it could be an awesome Baidu car.
Is Baidu building a self-driving car? We don’t know for sure, but comments like these, surely make Baidu and Robin Li very interesting.