Huawei Dreams Big, Promises Super-Cheap LiDAR Radar Sensors

LiDAR sensors are an essential part of self-driving cars, and the more the industry is focusing on this new means of transportation, the bigger the interest in developing technology to power the new trend.
LiDAR sensors help measure the distance to the car in front 1 photo
Photo: Analog Devices
As one of the world’s tech giants, China-based Huawei is also exploring several new ideas, and more recently, the company has started the work on a significantly cheaper LiDAR sensor.

Wang Jun, the chief of Huawei’s auto unit, explained that a potential LiDAR sensor developed by Huawei could end up costing no less than $100, down from the current price that can even reach $500.

In other words, a Huawei-made radar sensor could be five times more affordable than the current designs, and this can only be good news for everybody, as it could eventually make self-driving cars more affordable.

To make this project a reality, Huawei has recently set up an R&D center in Wuhan, where it already employs some 10,000 people that work on technology for the auto market, including these new LiDAR sensors.

Needless to say, cheaper LiDAR technology could attract the attention of many carmakers out there, albeit working with the Chinese company is quite a challenge this day.

Back in May 2019, the United States President Donald Trump officially blacklisted Huawei and banned it from working with American companies and using their products. This was quite a hit for Huawei, especially in the tech field where the Chinese firm could no longer install Android and Windows on its own devices.

Similar struggles could be experienced in the automotive market as well, as several other countries have followed in the United States’ footsteps and considered restricted Huawei’s access to certain industries, including 5G networks.

For now, Huawei keeps investing aggressively in several new products despite the sanctions announced by the U.S. President, and the new LiDAR sensor could be just one step for a long-term commitment to the automotive market.
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About the author: Bogdan Popa
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Bogdan keeps an eye on how technology is taking over the car world. His long-term goals are buying an 18-wheeler because he needs more space for his kid’s toys, and convincing Google and Apple that Android Auto and CarPlay deserve at least as much attention as their phones.
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