Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) has announced that it will use Harman (Samsung) and Google technologies to deliver a new "ecosystem" that it says will enhance the connected life of FCA vehicle owners globally.
The company says off-board, the system will promptly and securely manage in-vehicle and additional data using an architecture based on the Harman Ignite cloud-based platform. It also says The system will deliver an 'enhanced user experience that will assist owners by predicting maintenance needs, locating fuel and charging stations, receiving traffic prompts and restaurant offers and providing live customer-care assistance at the push of a button'. Vehicles can also receive over-the-air (OTA) software updates.
FCA says the global platform will offer owners 4G network connectivity and support the evolution to 5G, and is homologated for all regions and will integrate with any service provider around the world. The off-board system also has the capability to interact with future smart cities' infrastructure, as well as household devices via Samsung's "Smart Things" platform.
In addition to vehicle owners, dealers, fleet operators and service providers also will benefit from the features delivered through the new cloud-based connectivity.
On-board, the new system will be powered by Android, offering a 'strong, proven and intuitive app-based environment that provides fresh content via OTA updates, fast interaction and seamless wireless integration with the customer's mobile devices'. The trusted and secure system will offer owners continuous innovation and will feature updates through a built-in cellular network, allowing for new capabilities in autonomous driving initiatives, electrification and connected services.
This connected ecosystem will provide an optimal technical environment for FCA electrified vehicles, with applications such as remote battery management, smart EV trip navigator and vehicle-to-grid services. It will also support the FCA Mobility Services portfolio, including features such as pay-by-the-mile options, usage-based vehicle insurance, short-, medium- and long-term vehicle rental and peer-to-peer car sharing solutions, such as the U-Go system, recently launched by Leasys in Europe.
The key components of the system will start to rollout in phases across global regions during the second half of 2019 and all new FCA vehicles will be connected by 2022.
"By selecting industry leaders such as Samsung and Google, we are making an efficient and responsible utilisation of capital to provide advanced technological solutions to our customers worldwide," said Harald Wester, Chief Technical Officer, FCA. "In collaboration with Harman – Samsung and Google, we have developed a flexible, easy-to-use and connected 'ecosystem' that not only deploys today's technology, but is also ready to integrate upcoming innovations."
"Harman Ignite and our award-winning OTA are essential ingredients of the future of connected cars and we are thrilled to partner with FCA on building their global ecosystem. With these new technologies, Harman and Samsung offer a whole new level of customized and personalized services benefitting OEMs like FCA, consumers and enterprises in the growing car share industry in an unprecedented way," said Dinesh Paliwal, President and CEO Harman.
"The modern, in-vehicle experience must be designed for seamless connectivity and digital content, and provide an integrated, but familiar experience for the on-the-go consumer," said Patrick Brady, Vice President of Engineering at Google. "We are excited FCA will power its infotainment system with Android, providing its drivers with a reliable and rich environment ripe for app and content development."