Therese Poletti’s Tech Tales: Want to invest in self-driving cars? Check out the chips

The vision of a world that depends on self-driving cars has been the hottest topic in Silicon Valley this summer.

In the past few weeks, a slew of partnerships have formed between big auto makers, tech companies and startups as companies place a variety of bets to ensure they are not left behind. Just last week, Ford Motor Co. F, +1.38% chip giant Intel Corp. INTC, -0.17% and Uber Technologies Inc. all announced major partnerships or investments related to self-driving cars, including perhaps the most audacious news yet from Uber: It will begin to offer customers a few self-driving Volvos as part of its ride-hailing fleet in a Pittsburgh pilot program, the first time self-driving vehicles will be used by a ride-hailing service.

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