An Israeli startup that can remotely control huge numbers of autonomous vehicles and robots has raised $14.5 million.
Ottopia lets people supervise and guide hundreds of driverless vehicles and robots in industries including shipping, mining, agriculture, mobility, and logistics.
Full autonomy is impossible to achieve – autonomous vehicles (AVs) will always encounter rare situations that their artificial intelligence is not trained to handle.
But with Ottopia’s software they can stop and call for a human operator to draw a new path for the vehicle, and re-classify objects detected by the vehicle.
The software also continuously maps cellular coverage of every available network, and presents the information to the operator so they will know when and where immediate remote assistance is available.
Ottopia says that unlike today’s “golden ratio” in the industry – one human operator for every 10 driverless vehicles – it can allow one operator to guide hundreds and even thousands of AVs.
With the new funding, it plans to accelerate the development and rollout of its teleoperation software to fulfill its mission of enabling autonomy in all industries.
Investors who participated in the funding include ComfortDelGro, one of the world’s largest public transport companies, as well as AI Alliance Fund, and MizMaa Ventures.
Mr. Cheng Siak Kian, MD/Group CEO of ComfortDelGro said: “This investment in Ottopia is an important cornerstone of our future-proofing plans. Having teleoperation capabilities which will enable us to intervene and operate an AV remotely whenever needed, is critical in our future operational plans.”
Ottopia was founded in 2018, and is based in Tel Aviv.