BlackBerry Ltd.'s ties with global auto giant Hyundai were strengthened Tuesday with an agreement to supply advanced-driving software to a California startup working on a platform for Hyundai and Kia electric vehicles.
Under the licensing agreement, BlackBerry's QNX operating system will govern advanced level 2 self-driving features – or partial autonomy -- for "city-friendly" EVs promised by Los Angeles-based Canoo by the end of 2021.
Terms of Tuesday's agreement were not disclosed.
The software is also expected to power a scaleable "skateboard" platform Canoo is developing with Hyundai as part of the South Korean's $35-billion investment into EVs and autonomous driving systems. BlackBerry, of Waterloo, Ont., already has a deal in place to provide the QNX OS for Safety software for advanced Hyundai and Kia vehicles.
Founded as Evelozcity in 2017, Canoo was planned as a boutique EV brand that would offer vehicles by subscription. In 2019 it unveiled a van-style prototype that a bemused Jay Leno, host of Jay Leno's Garage on CNBC, likened to the pontoon-shaped Stout Scarab of the 1930s.