Now that Google’s Android operating system has dominated the mobile technology industry, appearing on 81% of the world’s smartphones, our green, neighborhood friendly robot is looking beyond smartphones and tablets to something more ambitious: the automobile.
Through the official Android blog, Google has confirmed that the Android operating system will be heading to cars in 2014 with the formation of theOpen Automotive Alliance (OAA), “a global alliance aimed at accelerating auto innovation with an approach that offers openness, customization and scale.” As of right now, the coalition consists of Google, Audi, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, and NVIDIA.
As Patrick Brady, Director of Android Engineering states:
“In this mult-screen world, switching between our different devices should be easy and seamless. Common platforms allow for one connected experience across our phone, tablet and PC, so we get the right information at the right time, no matter what device we’re using. But there’s still an important device that isn’t yet connected as seamlessly to the other screens in our lives – the car”.
With this, we can expect to be able to interact with music, apps, and other services and entertainment in a whole new way, as Android becomes integrated with the car, most likely with hands-free, voice and even gesture control.
Brady continues with:
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. Putting Android in the car will bring drivers apps and services they already know and love, while enabling automakers to more easily deliver cutting-edge technology to their customers. And it will create new opportunities for developers to extend the variety and depth of the Android app ecosystem in new, exciting and safe ways.
2014 seems like its going to be a big year for connected cars with Google’s announcement. Now, the biggest questions regarding ‘smartcars’ will definitely be: What this will mean for road rules, safety, and regulations? How the legal system will accommodate ‘smartcars?’ And finally, what impact will this have on the level of openness towards development—will it match what Android allows in the smartphone world?
What are your thoughts on Android ‘smartcars’? Are you looking forward to such integration, or are you worried about the consequences this may have on what we know as Android today? Share your comments and thoughts with us below!