Talking to the attendees of a private party for academic and industry researchers in Long Beach, California, Tesla CEO Elon Musk described the company’s upcoming custom artificial intelligence hardware as ‘the best in the world’.
According to CNBC, Musk brought with him Tesla’s VP of hardware Jim Keller, as he talked about the company’s AI hardware providing information about what Keller is working on.
“Jim is developing specialized AI hardware that we think will be the best in the world,” Musk said, according to one person who was at the event, which was not streamed live.
Keller suggested that with custom hardware it’s possible to boost efficiency, while Musk talked about power and cost advantages, according to one report about the event on Twitter. Musk also provided a projection for when fully automated driving will be available: two years.
Currently, Tesla’s Autopilot hardware system relies on graphics cards from Nvidia. It is believed that Tesla’s specialized hardware could one day be used inside its vehicles to do the computing work necessary for autonomous driving.
Companies like Ford and GM are also developing self-driving technology, whereas Google, which has developed custom chips that can be used instead of Nvidia graphics cards, is operating the Waymo self-driving car division. Meanwhile, Apple has developed custom silicon to handle AI workloads on mobile devices.
It’s not yet known when Tesla would start selling cars with the custom hardware.