Ernst & Young estimates that 104 million or so new cars are expected to have some form of connectivity by 2025. That’s good news for the large percentage (46%, according to Gartner) of today’s consumers who want their cars connected so they can safely access inside their car the applications they enjoy on their smartphone.
That desire for smartphone-like connectivity in cars extends to automatic or on-demand updates of in-car apps as those updates become available. Receiving accurate and up-to-date information on the drivability of their car – maintenance scheduling, recalls, etc. – is an extra benefit that consumers will, chances are, learn to rely upon.
Exploring the Future of In-Car Personalization and Mobile Interior Imaging Technology
As vehicles become an integral part of the Internet of Things, Ford and Intel are researching new opportunities for the connected car, including giving drivers the ability to remotely peer into their car using a smartphone, or a vehicle that could identify its owner using facial recognition software.
The joint research project, called Mobile Interior Imaging, or Project Mobii, explores how interior-facing cameras could be integrated with sensor technology and data already generated within and around the vehicle to create a more personalized and seamless interaction between driver and vehicle that transforms the driving experience.
Hyundai’s cloud-based Blue Link platform makes features like remote start and service information accessible through new devices like Google Glass.
Wearable devices will help owners save time and add a new level of convenience by allowing remote interaction with the vehicle without the need to pull out their smartphone. Hyundai plans to launch a Blue Link Glassware application next year with the all-new 2015 Genesis sedan.
More than 20 industry experts will outline their experiences in optimizing vehicle competitiveness, using the latest user data and integrating smartphones with embedded connectivity, at the Smartphone & Embedded Connectivity Vehicle Integration Summit 2014, February 26-27 in San Francisco.
Steffen Neumann, Portfolio Manager App Development Group, Mercedes-Benz R&D North America, will share lessons on overcoming long development cycles to meet customer trends, and will review the latest use cases.
Jake Sigal, CEO of Livio, which was recently acquired by Ford, will speak on overcoming the interoperability challenges faced by app developers, and evaluating customer preferences between smartphones and embedded content.
The firm said its platform offers carriers looking to enter the usage-based insurance market a cost-effective and quick deployment solution, putting telematics within reach of any size carrier to take advantage of this maturing and growing market segment.
Driveway Software said it makes entry to the usage-based insurance market affordable and easy by leveraging the insured’s own smartphone to monitor driving behavior and capture data. With the insured’s driving data and preliminary analytics in hand, combined with SmartUBI’s cloud-based analytics capabilities, carriers are better able to determine individual driver risk scores to help make the most informed risk and premium decisions.
Remote access software provider RealVNC selected 7layers, an international group of engineering & test centers, as its preferred partner for the testing and certification of RealVNC’s VNC Automotive technology in accordance with the Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC) standards.
7Layers, an Authorized Test Lab, supported RealVNC throughout the certification process, which included MirrorLink™ conformance and interoperability testing to validate that VNC Automotive meets with the CCC’s commitment to providing users with a safe and seamless experience of smartphone use in vehicles.
Abalta Technologies announced the launch of WEBLINK, which enables smartphones to operate as the primary in-vehicle computing device in connected cars. By integrating the WEBLINK client software, Abalta said car manufacturers can cost-effectively provide customers with an up-to-date and customized in-vehicle app experience in a safe and seamless way.
WEBLINK’s ability to run on all major smartphone operating systems also enables application developers to design driver-centric apps with ease. Existing HTML5 apps can be readily deployed to the in-vehicle environment and customized for OEM brands and target demographic groups, geographical region or user preference.
The integration of the smartphone into consumer vehicles will become all but standard on new models, according to a new report by Juniper Research, which forecasts that 92 million vehicles will feature technology to integrate the smartphone into the head-unit by 2016.
New protocols such as MirrorLink from the Connected Car Consortium will help automotive manufacturers like Mercedes and Toyota follow Ford in introducing technology that allows the smartphone to become a hub, enabling mobile Internet, smartphone apps and content access across the range of vehicles they sell.
The 2012 Chevy Volt and Equinox will be the first vehicles to offer Chevy MyLink, an in-car infotainment package that leverages OnStar safety and security features and also integrates online services like Pandora® internet radio and Stitcher SmartRadio® using hands-free voice and touch-screen controls via Bluetooth device connectivity. QNX Software Systems, which provides the operating system for OnStar, is also supplying the operating system for MyLink.
Ford said it will launch SYNC® AppLink, a downloadable software program, on the 2011 Fiesta later this year, allowing owners to access and control Android(TM) and BlackBerry® smartphone apps with voice commands and vehicle controls. Ford will introduce AppLink on most SYNC-equipped vehicles next year, as well as provide interoperability with other smartphones.
“The growth in smartphone mobile apps has been explosive, and Ford has worked hard to respond at the speed of the consumer electronics market,” said Doug VanDagens, director of Ford’s Connected Services Organization. “SYNC is the only connectivity system available that can extend that functionality into the car. AppLink will allow drivers to control some of the most popular apps through SYNC’s voice commands and steering wheel buttons, helping drivers keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road.”