Affectiva Raises $26 Million to Fast-Track Human Perception AI in Automotive and Conversational Interfaces

New Funding Will Accelerate the Development of AI That Can Understand All Things Human

 Affectiva, the global leader in Emotion AI and the pioneer of Human Perception AI, announced that it has closed $26 million in funding. The round, led by Aptiv PLC, as well as Trend Forward Capital, Motley Fool Ventures and CAC, brings the total invested in Affectiva to $53 million. The funding will enable Affectiva to evolve, accelerate and scale its perceptive technology in the automotive industry, as well as other areas such as conversational interfaces, social robotics and market research.

Affectiva created and defined the category of Emotion AI, which now encompasses a rich ecosystem of players and is set to become a multi-billion dollar industry. Building on its proven expertise in deep learning, computer vision and speech science, combined with its massive amounts of real-world data, Affectiva’s AI is pioneering the next frontier of artificial intelligence: Human Perception AI, software that can understand all things human. Human Perception AI will detect nuanced emotions as well as complex cognitive states, activities, interactions and objects people use.

“Since day one, we’ve been on a mission to humanize technology,” said Dr. Rana el Kaliouby, co-founder and CEO of Affectiva. “We’re seeing significant demand from the automotive industry in particular, as OEMs and Tier 1 suppliers concentrate on creating safer, more comfortable experiences for drivers and passengers. As our technology has evolved to detect more than just emotions, the automotive industry will be able to build intelligent vehicles that can better adapt and relate to the needs of people inside of them.”

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Affectiva will use its latest round of funding to fuel deployment of its Human Perception AI in production vehicles. Already, leading OEMs, Tier 1 suppliers, ridesharing providers, fleet management companies and developers of autonomous vehicles are working with Affectiva’s Automotive AI solution to understand drivers’ and passengers’ states and moods.

“We are working closely with Affectiva to commercialize advanced sensing solutions that enhance perception systems inside the vehicle,” said David Paja, Aptiv’s senior vice president and president of Advanced Safety & User Experience. “Aptiv has a rich history of bringing leading vehicle safety solutions to market, and together with Affectiva, we are using a powerful combination of Human Perception AI and predictive analytics, running on Aptiv’s high-speed computing platforms, to dramatically improve safety, attention management and the overall ride experience.”

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“Human Perception AI will unlock a deep understanding of the human experience in vehicles and other facets of our everyday lives,” Dr. el Kaliouby continued. “Particularly for conversational interfaces, social robots and smart devices, Human Perception AI will be key in making interactions between people and AI more effective, relational and productive. Ultimately, that level of understanding will also foster mutual trust between people and AI, which is crucial as AI takes on more roles in society. Affectiva is proud to be pioneering a new AI category that will strengthen and facilitate that trust.”

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