Google and Volvo partner to build Android into connected cars
Mon 15 May 2017
Google has announced that it has partnered with Volvo Cars to support the development of the car maker’s next-generation connected vehicles.
Through the new partnership, Volvo will be using Google’s Android to design its in-car infotainment and connectivity systems – offering a variety of connected and predictive apps and services. According to the Swedish car company, the Android solutions will be made available in Volvo models within the next two years.
‘We are making an important strategic step with the Google partnership. Google’s platform and services will enhance the user experience by enabling more personalisation possibilities, while Android will offer increased flexibility from a development perspective,’ commented Volvo’s Senior VP of Research and Development, Henrik Green.
Volvo suggested that the use of Android as its base operating system would help to increase speed and flexibility in development, as well as offering customers the opportunity to tailor their connected car experience.
The two companies are also working on another project to update recent Volvo models by integrating Google’s Local Search function. The location-based tool will be released as an app update to customers with Sensus Navigation.
As the automotive and technology sectors converge, Volvo has been at the forefront of the trend. In April last year, the automaker announced that it would be bringing a fleet of 100 self-driving cars to China as part of an initiative which will see local drivers test autonomous cars on public roads.
Earlier last year, the company also took part in an autonomous ‘platoon challenge‘ with five other auto brands. The experiment involved a series of trucks connected to an automated system, and ‘slipstreaming’ to come under the control of a ‘guardian’ manned vehicle at the front of the convoy.
Volvo had first hit the headlines for its platooning trials in 2011, during which a conventional car ‘shadowed’ a truck as part of research funded by the European Commission.