Google’s Android OS will be powering media displays in millions of cars worldwide from the beginning of 2021.
This would be possible because of a partnership of the US based tech company’s recently struck partnership with the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance which collectively makes and sells more cars than any other carmaker in the world currently. According to the agreement, Goole would be developing the operating system that would run the entertainment and GPS systems of cars manufactured by the alliance. Users of the new cars can access apps through the Play Store, navigation apps through Google Maps, and voice commands from Google Assistant.
“In the future, the Google Assistant, which employs Google’s leading AI technology, can become the main way customers interact with their vehicles, hands-free,” Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi’s Global VP of connected vehicles Kal Mos said in a statement.
10.6 million cars were sold worldwide by the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance last year. And till June 30 this year the Alliance has already sold 5.54 million vehicles. So numbers similar to 2017 can also be expected for the entire year of 2018. However, the number of cars that would have Google’s Android can be somewhat different compared to the figures above because it would not be until another three years that cars from the Alliance would have them. According to the estimates of the alliance, more than 14 million cars would be sold globally by it in 2022.
It has been about a decade or so that Google has been attempting to get into the car industry in some way according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. But such efforts have not been very successful because Google and other similar tech companies are perceived to be potential rivals by auto companies and they fear that the tech companies could mine user data for profit. Some of the auto companies such as Mercedes-Benz and BMW have chosen to develop GPS system on their own instead of allowing companies like Google to intrude in their space. However, such efforts have not been very successful in getting streamlined.
But it is undeniable that apps such as Google Maps are more popular than the car company systems because there are a huge number of drivers who just put their phones on the dashboard of their cars and use apps developed by the tech companies. Additionally, services like Android Auto and its Android OS are also offered for free by Google. This is hoped would make the transition easier.
According to the Wall Street Journal, users of Google apps will be asked for permission by Google to collect and use and analyze their data through the apps.
But there would also be other tech company developed apps apart from Google because the systems will be compatible with mobile devices that run on other operating systems such as Apple’s CarPlay.
(Adapted from TheVerge.com)