Open Automotive Alliance to bring safe vehicle connectivity on Android platform

A consortium of stakeholders form the Open Automotive Alliance to develop safe in-vehicle technology based on the Android platform for automotive connectivity.

Developer of the Android smartphone operating system, Google, has brought together major automotive manufacturers and other technology partners to form the Open Automotive Alliance (OAA), a consortium of industry stakeholders interested in developing the connected car in a sustainable, intuitive and safe way.

The OAA is driving for a goal of deploying the Android platform in vehicles as early as the current year and the high profile members of the alliance have the resources to be able to achieve this ambitious aim. Alongside Google, other members include automotive giants Audi, General Motors, Honda and Hyundai as well as technology company NVIDIA.

The main principles behind the alliance are those of openness, customization and scale, the main ingredients needed for the ability to create a common platform on which other technology suppliers can deliver applications. With vehicle connectivity and intelligence growing rapidly, the industry is in need of such leadership in terms of providing common platforms to prevent a proliferation of diverse systems that don’t operate together or require increasing “dashboard clutter” with different black boxes competing for space in the vehicle and for the attention of the driver.

The vehicle itself is experiencing a growth in intelligence and the requirement for connectivity with systems such as telematics units, GPS navigation systems, automatic emergency call units, cameras, sensors and infotainments systems. As Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) develop, greater levels of connectivity will be required with vehicle-to-infrastructure and vehicle-to-vehicle (V2x) communications forming a vital part of the mobility and transport safety requirements of the future.

By developing an open development model and a common platform, the OAA will deliver the ability for car manufacturers and technology providers to more easily and quickly deliver technology developments to their drivers in a safe, scalable and integrated way.

Audi’s Ricky Hudi believes that above all else, working towards a common platform will benefit driver safety. He says that consumer technology and automotive technology have never been more closely aligned and that the alliance will be the catalyst for faster innovation. His views were echoed by those of General Motors’ Mary Chan who sees the alliance will see an extension of people’s digital lives into their vehicles.

Honda’s Yoshiharu Yamamoto sees the collaboration as helping to advance safety for drivers as well as improving the ease of use of connected vehicles. Safety is also at the forefront of Hyundai’s development with the company seeking to enhance user experience through the safe and secure introduction of IT into their vehicles, according to the Vice Chairman of Research and Development, Woong-Chul Yang.

According to Google’s SVP of Android, Chrome and Apps, Sundar Pichai, by expanding the Android into the car, drivers will be able to enjoy a familiar and seamless experience so that they can remain focused on the road.

Jonathan Newell

Studied Engineering at Loughborough University and now involved in broadcast and technical journalism. Jonathan is based in London and Almaty.

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