Swedish carmaker, Volvo Cars and Tech giant Google have confirmed that the two companies have collaborated together to embed the Google Assistant, Google Play Store, Google Maps and many other Google services into Volvo's new-generation Sensus infotainment system, based on Google’s Android operating system. Google Android Auto will now be a standard feature on Volvo Cars going forward.
Volvo and Google say that this partnership will further enhance Volvo Car user to engage and interact with their cars. Apps and services developed by Google and Volvo Cars are embedded in the car and can be accessed through the infotainment system. Many other applications available on Google Play Store will now be optimised to work on Volvo Cars and can be downloaded directly for Android-based car infotainment systems.
Since the next generation of Sensus will run on Android, new apps and software updates will be available in real-time and can be automatically applied. This allows future Volvo cars to react to customer needs and offer drivers up-to-date information and predictive services.
“Bringing Google services into Volvo cars will accelerate innovation in connectivity and boost our development in applications and connected services,” said Henrik Green, senior vice president of research and development at Volvo Cars. “Soon, Volvo drivers will have direct access to thousands of in-car apps that make daily life easier and the connected in-car experience more enjoyable.”
Standard Google Android Auto available on aftermarket accessory and many other cars currently only allows phone connectivity and the OK Google Voice command cannot access in-car functions. The Google Assistant on Volvo Cars will now also allow the user to control in-car functions such as air conditioning, and use apps to play music and send messages. This integration will help in reducing driver distraction while driving.
Google Maps will also enable the next generation of Sensus to provide refreshed map and traffic data in real time, keeping drivers informed about upcoming traffic situations and proactively suggesting alternative routes.
Volvo Cars and Google partnership was first announced in 2017 when Volvo Cars announced the new generation of its infotainment system will be based on Google’s Android platform. The first Android-based system is intended to be launched in Volvo Cars by 2020.
“The Google partnership to be entered into is an important strategic alliance for Volvo Cars,” Henrik Green said. “The Android platform, Google services and Google’s working relationship with app developers in-house and worldwide will help us further improve the Volvo car experience.”