Chipmaker NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA) has announced that it has suspended self-driving tests across the world. The announcement comes just a week after an Uber Technologies Inc autonomous car struck and killed one person crossing a street in Arizona.
Uber is among Nvidia’s partners and applies some of its self-driving technology. Nvidia’s shares sunk 7.8 percent at $225.52, losing more than $11 billion in market value.
The company’s shares have more than doubled in value in the one year on bets that the company is poised to become a leader in chips for data centres, driverless cars and artificial intelligence.
Uber halted North American tests of its autonomous cars after the fatal accident on March 18 in Tempe, Arizona. And Arizona has since suspended permission for Uber to test self-driving cars on public streets.
The California Department of Motor Vehicles recently said that Uber had indicated that it would not be renewing its current permit for testing autonomous cats in California.
In current terms, Uber has the permission to test autonomous cars on California public roads up to March 31.
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According to Nvidia Chief Executive Officer Jensen Huang, Uber should be given a chance to fully comprehend what went wrong. He was speaking in San Jose, California.
Additionally, Huang said he is optimistic that investments in self-driving technology would go up, not fall, in the aftermath of the Uber accident.
Nvidia is a leader in the autonomous sector with its artificial intelligence platform and is currently partnering with major automakers globally such as Volkswagen AG, Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) and Audi AG.
Nvidia has been carrying out testing of self-driving vehicles around the world, including in California; Santa Clara, New Jersey, Germany, and Japan. A spokesperson of the company said the demand for the company’s fleet of manually driven data collection cars has been rising.
In a blog post, Roger Lanctot, who is an automotive technology analyst at Strategy Analytics that it is inevitable that Nvidia takes the steps it is taking so as to mitigate the impact of the fear created by the Uber incidence.
More than 370 companies which are developing self-driving technology are using Nvidia DRIVE platform. These companies include robotaxi companies and automakers.