TomTom and Baidu have teamed to develop high definition maps for autonomous driving.

TomTom’s HD Map and RoadDNA are digital map products helping automated vehicles locate themselves on the road and plan manoeuvres, even when travelling at high speed. TomTom’s HD Map already covers the US and Western Europe, with more than 360,000km of highways and interstates.

“With Baidu moving to TomTom’s map making platform for high definition maps, we’re creating a globally unified HD map service for OEMs and technology companies who are working on the future of driving,” said TomTom CEO, Harold Goddijn.

For his part, Baidu COO, Qi Lu added: “Autonomous driving is a paradigm shift for the automotive industry and engineering and testing the systems to make it a reality is much less effort when those systems are globally identical.

“Our collaboration with TomTom creates a uniform global component in the form of a single HD map service, and further advances our open source self-driving car programme, Apollo.”

Baidu is an artificial intelligence company and mapping service provider in China. The company has been developing HD maps since 2013, using technologies such as deep learning to help automate data processing and map creation.