There's a race to put more computing power in self-driving cars, and it's shaping up to be eerily similar to an earlier battle between Intel and AMD to crank up PC horsepower.

Intel at CES announced the powerful Go computer with up to 28 Xeon chips so self-driving cars can cruise the streets safely. Beyond Xeon, Go will also be available with either next-generation Atom chips or 5G connectivity.

The first 40 self-driving BMW cars based on the Go will hit the streets in tests this year.

Autonomous cars need a lot of computational power under the hood to avoid accidents and make smart driving decisions. That horsepower comes from computers like the Go, which is configured to be faster than gaming PCs and many servers.

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