Google brings Android to cars with Open Automotive Alliance

The internet giant teams up with Audi, GM, Honda, Hyundai and Nvidia in a bid to introduce its mobile operating system into cars

Google is founding a new organisation in order to bring its Android mobile operating system into cars.

The Open Automotive Alliance will be led by Google and has already signed up big names from the car industry, including Audi, General Motors, Honda and Hyundai, as well as graphics card leader Nvidia, to speed up the use of mobile technology on the roads.

Patrick Brady, director of Android engineering at Google, revealed the group’s formation on the company’s blog, claiming whilst other devices were becoming more entwined with another, making it simpler to move from screen to screen, the car had been left out of the ecosystem.

“Today, millions of people already bring Android phones and tablets into their cars, but it’s not yet a driving-optimised experience,” he wrote. “Wouldn't it be great if you could bring your favorite apps and music with you, and use them safely with your car's built-in controls and in-dash display?”

“Together with our OAA partners, we're working to enable new forms of integration with Android devices, and adapting Android for the car to make driving safer, easier and more enjoyable for everyone.”

As well as benefiting drivers, Brady said it would bring more opportunities to app developers who could “extend the variety and depth of the Android app ecosystem” for drivers.

Google is now calling for more car manufacturers and technology firms to get on-board and join the OAA.

Ricky Hudi, head of electronics development at founding member Audi, said: “The worlds of consumer and automotive technologies have never been more closely aligned, and this alliance will only pave the way for faster innovation.”

Jen-Hsun Huang, president and CEO of the only other tech company involved, NVIDIA, added: “The car is the ultimate mobile computer. With onboard supercomputing chips, futuristic cars of our dreams will no longer be science fiction. The OAA will enable the car industry to bring these amazing cars to market faster.”

Google warned it would take manufacturers different lengths of time to get the newly developed technologies to market but claimed we could expect to see Android in cars by the end of 2014.



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