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CES 2014 to Spark Android vs. iOS In-Car Battle

Google to announce industry consortium connecting phones with cars
12/18/2013 07:40 AM EST
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zewde yeraswork
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OEMs
zewde yeraswork   12/18/2013 8:59:57 AM
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Even if they have a good sense of what' s needed in terms of software for infotainment systems, it'll be interesting to see how long OEMs can stave off the likes of Apple and Google. This is a fascinating market and one with a great deal of opportunity to be had. I would be surprised if more hardware companies aren't preparing offerings for CES 2015 and beyond.

Caleb Kraft
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the android advantage
Caleb Kraft   12/18/2013 9:22:41 AM
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This is quite interesting. I suspect android has a big advantage here since the car manufacturers can make their own version, just like many cell phone providers have done. Apple, being a closed system will have a much harder entry. They would basically need to create a new product that is intended to be the car computer. I can't even really imagine them doing that.

junko.yoshida
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Industry consortium
junko.yoshida   12/18/2013 1:51:06 PM
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I am sure I am not alone feeling somewhat weary every time when I hear "industry consortium." It's because a lot of times it is something that got cobbled together for the sake of big announcements.

But in this case, this does make sense.

Nobody wants to write software for a dozen different car companies, right?

You need a standard to which you can write your in-vehicle apps.

Sheetal.Pandey
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Re: the android advantage
Sheetal.Pandey   12/18/2013 1:54:51 PM
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There might not be as much a battle between Android and iOS in automobile sector as its currently seen in smartphones. Are there enough applications that are needed in car that can be supported by these OSs. 

Doug_S
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Re: the android advantage
Doug_S   12/18/2013 2:08:06 PM
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The argument goes both ways.  Being able to customize Android means that it might have very different looks and versions between automakers, which would complicate things for app developers.

 

I don't think cars should integrate closely enough with either that it particularly matters which you use.  Cars last a lot longer than phones.  If the car you bought in 2003 integrated with a Palm and the one in 2007 with Blackberry both would be pretty useless today.

 

All you really need is integration of your maps/directions and music.  Having it capable of going hands free and enable voice texting is OK for now, but both will probably be banned in most states before long since drivers in a hands free call are very nearly as distracted as those holding the phone - it isn't the driving with one hand that causes problems (many of us do that even when not holding anything) but the conversation itself.

 

The automakers ought to get together and create an open standard that they support and let Android and Apple write to that API.  One wonders what a Fandroid or an Apple fanboy would do if their brand of choice made a deal with the "other guys".  Would they buy a different car, switch their phone, or do without the integration?

junko.yoshida
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Re: the android advantage
junko.yoshida   12/18/2013 2:15:44 PM
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@Sheetal, that would have been my original question.  But we are beginning to see a host of new apps that drivers would find convenient in using while in their cars. Parking space finder is one of the prime apps.

There are other apps, such as allowing a driver to let their friends known "automatically" where he is driving. (You know, your friends are waiting for you at a restaurant, and keep texting you, "where are you?")

These apps are currently developed for either iOS or Android phones, assuming that drivers will bring their own smartphones into their cars. But letting drivers directly interact with their smartphones through their handsets' tiny screen can't be safe.

Hence, wouldn't it be nice if an in-vehicle system can somehow run that app, display it intelligently that fit on the in-vehicle screen? 

 

alistaira
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Re: the android advantage
alistaira   12/18/2013 2:41:52 PM
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There is already a standards body for smartphone to car connectivity and that is the Car Connectivity Consortium which is creating a specification called MirrorLink. Its members include both smartphone and automakers and much work has been done to address the driver distraction issues.

junko.yoshida
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Re: the android advantage
junko.yoshida   12/18/2013 4:41:46 PM
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@alistaira, thanks for your comments.

A couple of quick questions. Do Samsung's Galaxy work with MirrorLink?

Do iPhones work with MirrorLink?

How is MirrorLink different from MiraCast?

hazydave
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Not sure who wins in this... if anyone
hazydave   12/18/2013 4:51:17 PM
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First of all, cars really seem like small potatos here. If every one of the 15 million cars sold in the USA had some Android or Apple presence, that's what, a couple of extra days. Android outsold all versions of Windows in 2013 by close o a 3:1 ratio, and it's pretty much a lock to be the first applications platform to sell over a billion in a year, next year. From the automakers' prespective, they want the hot tech, particularly whrn they can package $50 in parts and sell thay as a $350 option. But an option it must remain, simply because they don't want to give me a reason to not buy their car based on that tech. As an Android user, I'm not about to pay real money for an iPhone interface of any kind. From what you wrote here, it certainly sounds like Google may have a sound approach using Miracast... that is a standard, not just a Google thing. And it's a losing game to build the whole computer into a car... I've upgraded my Android tablet twice in the last four years, and I know Apple users who buy one pad and one phone new every year. Locking the whole platform in would be as silly as locking a $4000 TV into the "smart" functionality of a $50 Roku box. But build in standards to extend my device's UI to the car, and the car's sensory network to the device, and you'll have something.

alistaira
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Re: the android advantage
alistaira   12/18/2013 4:52:29 PM
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@junko. Quick answers to a quick question ;) Samsung? Maybe but I can't speak for them. iPhone? I think you already know the answer to that (it's 'no', probably "hell no")

MiraCast just replicates the screen display. MirrorLink does something similar but it also includes in the protocol how to send car controls to the phone, includes bi-derections audio transfer as well as authentication of smartphones. I can introduce you to the architect as there is enough there for a whole new article and he'll explain it better than I can.

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