Car Connections

by Todd McDonald on January 30, 2014

If you have ever driven on a journey with a child younger than 16 for more than an hour, chances are they had a tablet or phone filled to the brim with a variety of movies, games, and apps. Gone are the days when simply taking in the ever-changing view or even watching a movie on a built-in DVD player could satisfy their needs.

But passengers aren’t the only ones whose needs have evolved. Today, even the driver expects a variety of functions at their fingertips, from playing music to displaying maps to dictating messages and more.

Enter Google’s Open Automotive Alliance (OAA) with a simple mission to allow automakers to more easily bring cutting-edge technology and the Android platform to their drivers. So far, several auto industry leaders including Audi, GM, Honda and Hyundai have signed on.

Of course, the concept of in-dash “infotainment” is certainly not new.  Over the past few years, carmakers have experimented with an array of different technologies and explored a variety of partnerships to come up with the ultimate in-dash communication systems – from Mircosoft’s Sync system to Blackberry’s QNX software to variants of the Linux operating system and even “homegrown” software.

However, as the recent Bloomberg Business article Google Teams With GM, Honda, and Audi to Bring Android to Cars points out, many of the efforts to date have been designed to give car companies products that differ from their rivals, requiring software companies to write different applications for each carmaker – a costly and time-consuming process.

In contrast, the OAA’s common platform that spans across vehicles will as Sundar Pichai, SVP of Android, Chrome & Apps at Google explains “allow our industry partners to more easily integrate mobile technology into cars.”

In some ways, we like to think our alliance network at TEQ is similar to the OAA. By developing an alliance of carefully selected partners with a shared vision, we can also drive down hassles and costs, while providing customers access to new products and offerings otherwise not available to them. (If you would like to learn more about our key partnerships, click here.)

What about you? Can you think of any examples of alliance networks that have resulted in a new product at a lower cost?

 

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