Honda Motor Company yesterday in Japan, or today in the US, announced that in December 2021 it invested in U.S. (California)-based Helm.ai to “strengthen its software technology development in the areas of artificial intelligence (AI) and computer vision*1 technologies.” Honda claimed that Helm.ai “has key strengths in the area of AI-based image recognition technologies advanced through unsupervised learning”*2.
Helm.ai is an artificial intelligence software startup company established in November 2016. Honda and Helm.ai have been working in together since 2019 through Honda Xcelerator*3, described as a global open innovation program of Honda.
Honda said it invested in Helm.ai “to strengthen value creation in the efforts to make mobility products more intelligent and to generate greater achievements more quickly. The financing will further strengthen the relationship between the two companies and accelerate development of original solutions for Honda that combine Honda technologies and AI technologies of Helm.ai.”
*1 Technology to recognize specific elements from computer-based visual information and provide necessary information based on the results of such recognition.
*2 Unsupervised learning is one of the methods of machine learning, which supports AI. Unlike supervised learning through which AI learns the correct answers to derive from labeled input data, unsupervised learning lets AI learn without being provided with the correct answers and derives the patterns and unique characteristics of the unlabeled data on its own.
*3 Honda Xcelerator is a global open innovation program designed to facilitate collaboration between startups and Honda. The program is led by Honda Innovations Inc., a subsidiary of Honda Motor Co., Ltd. based in Silicon Valley in the U.S.