Ola has launched Ola Play, a connected car platform for ride sharing. Ola Play is powered by proprietary in-car and cloud technologies from Ola, by bringing advance car controls, choice of personalised content and a fully connected interactive experience for the user. The platform hardware is said to be a first-of-its-kind solution built by Ola, in partnership with Qualcomm.
Ola Play also allows various partners like Apple Music, Sony LIV, Audio Compass and Fynd to build interactive experiences for users. Mahindra and Mahindra, as part of its strategic partnership with Ola, is integrating this technology in its vehicles, enabling both companies to build holistic solutions for the ride sharing space.
Speaking at the launch, Bhavish Aggarwal, co-founder and CEO, Ola, said, “The entire Ola team is proud to launch Ola Play, the world’s first connected car platform for ride sharing. I believe this will completely transform the consumer’s ride experience, giving the user the power to control the interactions within the car, and usher in a new era in the ride sharing industry. With over 60 million minutes spent in Ola rides every day, the impact on consumer comfort, convenience and productivity can be transformative. This will further propel ride sharing as the first choice of mobility for many more millions.”
He added, “As a young Indian company, we’re proud to be at the forefront of the Startup India movement. Ola Play is a world first, built in India by an Indian team, which showcases that we can do better than the best in the world, and be global leaders in technology and innovation.”
Jim Cathey, senior vice president, Asia Pacific and India, Qualcomm International Inc, said, “We continue to invest in developing solutions for the next generation of connected cars. The latest advances in telecom infrastructure and data connectivity have redefined how individuals and machines interact with each other. We therefore wanted to create in-vehicle communication solutions that take advantage of this. We are proud to work with Ola for this unique offering and believe that this is a step forward towards a comprehensive connected vehicle solution that will become reality in the not so distant future.”
Veejay Ram Nakra, SVP, sales and customer care, automotive division, Mahindra & Mahindra, stated, “At Mahindra, we recognise the need to adopt technology to develop new ecosystems for our consumers who are increasingly consuming mobility differently. The launch of Ola Play is one such manifestation that will bring in a radically new approach and cutting edge technological innovation to the ride sharing world. We are excited to partner Ola to realise the possibilities towards enhancing the experience for drivers and customers alike. We are confident that this will revolutionise the way our customers will interact with their vehicles and define the future of shared mobility.”
Uday Sodhi, EVP and head – digital business, Sony LIV, commented, “With Ola Play, we are offering unique content that is tailored to the needs and preferences of viewers on the move. As a brand, Sony LIV is the first premium video on demand (VOD) service, providing multi-screen engagement to users on all devices; and is the first amongst its competition to provide original exclusive premium content. While we are the country’s first digital VOD platform; our association with Ola Play will allow us to further customise popular shows, movies and more, for Indians to consume in a highly engaged way, while on the move.”
Ola Play transfers the control of the in-car experience to users from the driver console, which enables interfacing with the consumer’s device, once a ride begins. Customers can enjoy the Ola Play experience from their own devices or from the large screen devices mounted in-car, along with car’s surround sound systems. This system uses customer preferences and current ride information like time and destination to offer personalised recommendations during the ride. Ola Play will be made available on Ola Prime in Bengaluru, Mumbai and Delhi for select customers and will be rolled out across other cities and to over 50,000 vehicles by March 2017.