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January 27, 2021

Qualcomm integrates Amazon Alexa into Snapdragon cockpit platform

Qualcomm Technologies and Amazon said they would "pre-integrate" the Alexa Custom Assistant with the Qualcomm Snapdragon automotive cockpit platforms.

By Olly Wehring

Qualcomm Technologies and Amazon said they would “pre-integrate” the Alexa Custom Assistant with the Qualcomm Snapdragon automotive cockpit platforms.

This new system is designed to support automotive OEMs and Tier-1 suppliers to build customisable, in-vehicle intelligent assistants and is offered as an extension module to the Alexa automotive software development kit (SDK) which will “soon” be available for the third generation cockpit platforms as well as the recently announced fourth generation platform.

The digital cabin assistance system is enhanced with claimed superior, “highly-intuitive voice-based capabilities for natural, conversational interactions with driver and passengers”.

The assistant is built on Alexa technology and can be tailored to each vehicle brand with unique wake words, voices and capabilities. The product, which is available to automotive OEMs on a pre-approved basis as an extension module to the Alexa SDK, provides access to voice artificial intelligence (AI) technology, including the wake word engine, spoken language understanding, intent routing, and response orchestration enabling developers to build, a voice experience without hefty investment.

The new system uses the Snapdragon cockpit platforms with Smart Audio Platform and Voice Assist technology featuring multichannel echo cancellation noise suppression (ECNS), allowing for easy access to Alexa services, even when multiple people are speaking within the car cabin. Additionally, the system uses the voice identification and zonal interference cancellation technology for a personality-aware voice assistant.

The new functionality can also be made available via Qualcomm’s Car-to-Cloud services, which feature claimed unique Soft SKU capability, allowing automakers and Tier-1 suppliers to update the new assistant product via over-the-air upgrades. The Car-to-Cloud Service is designed to keep cockpit and telematics systems up-to-date as well as afford the flexibility to unlock features post-deployment, allowing automakers to keep pace with the increasing performance requirements due to new functionality additions, changing technology trends and vehicle maintenance, over the life of the vehicle.

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