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Qualcomm unveils its 4th generation automotive platforms

The chip maker aims to improve the driving experience in next-gen vehicles with its Snapdragon automotive cockpit platforms.

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At a virtual event this week, Qualcomm introduced its next generation of digital cockpit solutions with the 4th Generation Qualcomm Snapdragon automotive cockpit platforms.

The 4th Generation Snapdragon automotive cockpit platforms are engineered as a homogenous and multipurpose solution to try to address the transition to a zonal architecture. The architecture serves as a central hub for compute, computer vision, artificial intelligence (AI), and multi-sensor processing. Qualcomm also claims the architecture contains flexible software configuration to address the compute, performance, and functional safety needs for that zone or domain.

The new digital cockpit platforms are scalable and support the three Snapdragon performance: performance (entry-level), premiere (mid-tier), and paramount (supercomputing). The platforms utilise the 5nm processing technology and, according to Qualcomm, provide automakers with the one of the highest performance system-on-chip (SoC).

The new digital cockpit platforms are designed to provide software scalability and flexibility with support for high-level and real-time operating systems in hypervisor and container software configurations. The company claims this allows support for multiple engine control units (ECUs) and domain consolidation — including cluster and cockpit, augmented reality heads-up-display (AR-HUD), infotainment, rear seat displays, mirror replacement (e-Mirror), and in-cabin monitoring services.

The platforms allow video processing capabilities to integrate drive recording and surveillance functionality.  The platforms use the same software architecture and framework across all tiers. Qualcomm claims this reduces development complexity and commercialisation time, while minimising maintenance costs for automakers.

The 4th generation Qualcomm Snapdragon automotive cockpit platforms are also capable of the company’s Car-to-Cloud with Soft SKU capabilities. This allows the end-consumer to have the latest features and capabilities through over-the-air (OTA) updates post-deployment and throughout the lifecycle of the vehicle.

The new platforms utilise the 6th generation Qualcomm Kryo central processing unit (CPU), hexa-core processor, multi-core AI Engine, 6th generation Adreno graphics processing unit (GPU), and Spectra image signal processor (ISP).

Qualcomm has secured infotainment and digital cockpit wins with 20 of the 25 global automaker brands. The company is also continuing to work with other automakers and Tier-1 suppliers to bring its technologies to vehicles.

The new digital cockpit platforms are targeting start of production in 2022. The automotive industry will be able to develop solutions with the 4th generation Qualcomm Snapdragon automotive development platform (ADP) from Q2 2021.

For more information about the platform, visit https://www.qualcomm.com/products/automotive.

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