After the house, it is the car’s turn. As of March 2019, vehicles by German manufacturer BMW will have an intelligent voice assistant, based on Alexa by Amazon. The ambition: what works in a sitting room can also work in a car.
With their sensors and digital technologies, cars are becoming smart and connected objects. And as they become more connected, they can also offer new infotainment services: navigation, music, the remote control of connected objects… The spectrum of services is growing.
Tech giants are putting up a fight to get their operating systems in the cockpits. SEAT was the first to integrate Amazon’s Alexa in its cars. First in a few selected markets and starting next year more generally. But the competition isn’t far behind. Other manufacturers choose to develop their own voice assistants. This year, mainly the high-end manufacturers have innovated. The first was Mercedes-Benz with its MBUX system (Mercedes-Benz User eXperience). A device inaugurated by Class A, capable of understanding a host of orders, provided you start your sentence with the typical “Hey, Mercedes!”
Remote closing of the curtains
BMW also follows the trend. Based on artificial intelligence, BMW’s assistant will be on board next year. It will allow the driver and passengers to access several features of the vehicle (GPS navigation, radio and even Skype to participate in a teleconference while driving), but also home functionalities such as opening the garage door remotely, closing the curtains, turning off the heating or turning on the lights, for example.
Renault signed a partnership with Google for a standard application in 2021. This will allow access to the Android software platform, but also to other features, including those related to the “Home” universe of the giant of Mountain View. The challenge is significant, even existential for car manufacturers because in time, the value of cars, once they’re self-driving, will be in its content.