Baidu Unmanned Bus Project Change: Main Personnel Withdrawal, Products Stop Promotion

 Baidu Unmanned Bus Project Change: Main Personnel Withdrawal, Products Stop Promotion

Li Qin

Baidu has invested more than 300 people in the Apollon Unmanned Bus Project, but now the main staff has been withdrawn, leaving only simple maintenance.

36 krypton learns from many people close to Baidu Apollon Unmanned Bus Project that the main technology and developers of the project have been withdrawn and dispersed into other projects and Apollo open source projects.

Another Baidu ex-employee who participated in the Apollon project also said to 36 krypton, The cost of Apollons minibus is more than 2 million yuan, the price is about 1.5 million, and Baidu is no longer promoting it.

Apollon is a self-driving minibus project launched by Baidu and Xiamen Jinlong for two years. In July 4, 2018, Robin Li, chairman of Baidu group, released the L4 class self driving minibus at the AI developer conference, and announced that the 100th production of the two dragon production lines in Xiamen Jinlong production line were also ordered from the Japanese nuclear power plant and the kaolin community.

In July 2018, Robin Li announced that the output of the company was offline at the second Baidu AI developer conference. The picture came from the Oriental IC.

Robin Li is highly rated for this project. 2018 will be the first year of automatic driving products, which is comparable to the historical node of the Ford T.

During the Shanghai Auto Show in April 2017, Lu Qi, then president of Baidu, announced the launch of Baidu Auto Driving Open Platform - Apollo Program. Apollo is a landing project of Apollo Platform in the field of commercial vehicles.

According to the concept of unmanned vehicle design, Apollon canceled the traditional bus and driving-related equipment, including steering wheel, brake/accelerator pedal, as well as the traditional drivers seat no longer exists, nuclear load 14 people (6 stations), the main landing scene is the closed scenes of science and technology park, park, intelligent industry park, etc., at present. Commercial trial operation has been carried out in Beijing, Xiongan, Fuzhou and Wuhan.

According to a number of media reports in Haidian Park in Beijing, Apollons algorithm is sensitive, stops long from pedestrians and drives slowly. The official maximum speed is 40 kilometers per hour, but the actual speed is limited to 10 kilometers per hour, which is less than adult jogging speed.

At the beginning of this year, Baidu upgraded the Apollon project and launched Apollon 2.0, which improved the computing platform, endurance and convenience, including: 1. Apollon 2.0 will be equipped with Intel E5 and 8 core processors; through high-intensity vibration testing and EMC testing; and support multi-channel CAN total. Line access capability. 2. Battery capacity is increased from 42.3 kwh to 49.3 kwh. 3. Supporting front-end electric heating can quickly defuse frost and snow on glass and increase ABS function.

From the point of view of the upgrade project, in addition to the upgrade of computing platform, it is more related to vehicle safety verification and power system upgrade. Baidu Autopilot, who is close to the Apollon project, revealed that it was early this year that the main personnel of the Apollon project evacuated in large numbers after the launch of Apollon 2.0.

When the project matures, its normal for people to quit. An ex-employee of the Apollon project told him 36 krypton, but at the same time admitted, Apollon sells one unit at a loss, which is not helpful to boost stock prices, so it is no longer marketing.

Baidu Autopilot Project Apollo was launched in 2017, which became an important expenditure item of Baidu. In the first quarter of 2019, Baidu spent 4.2 billion yuan on R&D, an increase of 26% over the same period last year, but its net profit attributable to Baidu fell sharply, losing 327 million yuan, compared with 6.694 billion yuan in the same period last year.

A departing employee of Baidu L3 Intelligent Automobile Business Department told him that only for AVP project, Baidu has three teams working on it. There is a valet parking project team in Chongqing Wanda. Chen Chong, senior manager of high-quality map, also pulled a team to do AVP in Shenzhen a year ago.

Recently, Baidu High Speed Autopilot (HWP) project personnel also turned to AVP, has won thousands of orders for Weima cars.

Business successive adjustments, so that Baidu lost BMW, the star car companys high-precision map orders, was newly intercepted by the four-dimensional map. On July 15, BMW announced a new partnership with 4D Maps, which will provide BMW China with high-precision autopilot mapping services, while in November 2016, Baidu will cooperate with BMW in high-precision mapping business.

After getting BMWs high-precision map order, there are HWP projects, resources are invested here, but HWP failed to achieve, and then turned to AVP, resulting in high-precision map can not meet BMWs requirements, and naturally dropped the order. These people said.

In addition to the L3 Intelligent Driving Department constantly changing its focus, Baidu L4 Auto Driving Department is also focusing on the direction.

On August 2, a small batch of Robotaxi automatic taxis, which Baidu cooperated with Red Flag, landed in Changsha and launched the Baidu Auto-Driving Taxi Project Apollo Go to prepare for large-scale manned test. On April 1 this year, Baidu has established Hunan Apollo Zhihang Technology Co., Ltd. with Pioneer Holdings, Hunan Xiangjiang Development Group and Intelligent Science and Technology Innovation Center to participate in the operation of the auto-driving taxi project.

36 krypton learned from many Baidu employees that Robo-taxi is the main project being pushed inside Baidu, and Baidu Meiyan has also drawn a lot of manpower to support it.

A self-driving practitioner affirmed Baidus route. Drip has independent self-driving subsidiary to do auto-driving taxi. North Americas most popular and most expensive auto-driving companies are urban auto-driving companies. This must be a huge market in the future. Baidu should see this point.

The road of self-driving is full of challenges. I hope Baidu will take the right direction this time.

Source of this article: 36 krypton responsible editor: Wang Fengzhi_NT2541