Could Detroit be the next Silicon Valley? Fortune Magazine certainly thinks so.
With cars becoming more and more technologically advanced, General Motors and the other automotive companies who are responsible for keeping the Motor City moving are focusing increasingly on the high tech innovations that have been almost exclusive to California’s Silicon Valley. Alternatively, Silicon Valley has been seeing a surge in manufacturing. Its no secret that both the automotive industry and the technology industry have a huge impact on our economy, and that these industries have been working hand in hand for some time now. As time unfolds, cars are becoming more and more intertwined with technology.
Fortune’s Bruce Katz writes in his article:
“Over 32,000 professionals in the Detroit metro area are employed in the computer systems design sector alone – many of which feed into the larger automotive supply chain.”
Over the past five years, more than 15% of GM’s patent filings have been software related. On the other side of the country, Google has been focusing on patents associated with manufacturing. Yes, many of Google’s patents are related to computer hardware, but they are also working on power and energy devices and mechanical hardware. Many of these patents stem from Google’s autonomous car project.
“The very fact that the world’s leading software giant is moving into the automotive sphere (and that one of Detroit’s Big Three automakers invests so much in software R&D) shows just how integrated these two industries have become.”
The marriage of these two industries has a very specific upside: labor will likely be cheaper here at home instead of as a result of outsourcing.
So the next time your smart phone automatically syncs up with your car as soon as you get in it, you can thank both businesses for making your life just a little easier.