NXP Semiconductors (NASDAQ:NXPI) is arguably best known for its near-field communication chips. But several years ago, it began widening its lens to include the ability of cars to communicate with one another, as well as with the road and the environment around them.

Now it is harnessing the power of Amazon's (NASDAQ:AMZN) cloud computing through a partnership to enable cars to communicate with data centers.

Computer chip with a car icon on it

Image source: Getty Images.

The chipmaker announced on Tuesday that it has entered into a strategic relationship with Amazon Web Services "to deliver a secure, edge-to-cloud compute solution for next-generation vehicles."

Typically data that is collected by Internet of Things devices must first be sent to a central server for processing before being sent back to the device for reaction. That creates delays, even if measured in milliseconds, that could be crucial, particularly when it comes to vehicle communications.

Edge computing allows the data center processing to be relocated to the device (or to the "edge," as it were), where real-time processing can occur, allowing for faster response times.

By coupling Amazon's massive edge and cloud computing services with NXP's new S32G vehicle network processors, the companies seek to eliminate the latency issues inherent in typical cloud computing setups.

NXP says by expanding secure access to real-time, vehicle-wide data, machine learning could accelerate the capabilities of intelligent vehicles that improve over their lifetime through remote updates. It offers the example of an automaker monitoring cars for potential component failures even before a repair is needed, which would reduce the need for warranty repair or even a recall. 

It suggests edge-to-cloud computing could help optimize the carmaker's supply chain while also improving the customer experience by limiting service visits.

NXP Semiconductor and Amazon Web Services will host a webinar on Thursday to further explain and demonstrate the process.

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