Google's Android could soon power cars from Audi's stable
Software giant Google may already be well on its way to building self driving cars, but there's another potentially untapped and fast growing market for in-car infotainment systems that it's now looking to enter.
The company will foray into the in-car Android market announcing a tie-up with luxury carmaker Audi at CES (Consumer Electronics Show) 2014. According to a report in Engadget, Android will power the carmakers infotainment systems which will be built into the car, rather than running off your Android powered smartphone.
The report adds that the collaboration will include chipmaker NVIDIA, and that such systems will give users the similar navigation, communication and entertainment functions that are available on Google powered phones.
The move towards the Android systems was complemented by Audi's announcement of featuring LTE technology for select models. Google's decision to enter the market of in-car infotainment systems comes after rival Apple announced its iOS in the car initiative which would be made possible with its iOS 7 software update.
Users for long have dreaded over hard to use and boring in-car infotainment systems. Carmakers do not have the technology or resources to invest on such a platform, and as users are already accustomed to using devices that run on Android, iOS and Windows, it seems like a logical step to bring them into cars.
For car manufacturers in-car infotainment is another way of marketing cars to tech-savy buyers of today that demand connectivity while on the move. On the other hand cars to software giants like Google are just another platform through which they can sell their services to users.
Google and Audi's tie-up isn't the first of this kind. American auto giant Ford and Microsoft have been collaborating to build the SYNC system for a few years now. Recently, British luxury car marquee Jaguar Land Rover announced its collaboration with Intel to build the next generation of in-car infotainment systems.