10 January 2017
Microsoft at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas announced a Connected Vehicle Platform that will provide a set of services built on its Azure cloud to the auto manufacturers who are facing disruption from four modern forces – connected, autonomous, shared, and electric cars. Microsoft said that this Connected Vehicle Platform will help the auto manufacturers to create custom connected driving experiences.
It’s not easy for the auto manufacturers to achieve these modern forces as they require expensive resources. Microsoft wants to help such manufacturers by providing a ready platform so that they can maintain their pace in the fierce and rapidly growing competition.
Microsoft said, this is not a “finished product,” it’s rather “a living, agile platform that starts with the cloud as the foundation.”
The platform addresses five core scenarios - predictive maintenance, improved in-car productivity, advanced navigation, customer insights, and help building autonomous driving capabilities.
Back in June, Qualcomm also announced a similar platform called Connected Car Reference Platform for automakers, module OEM customers, and developers.
Here at Microsoft’s Connected Vehicle Platform, the cloud will do everything taking the load of sensor and usage data from connected vehicles, and then helping automakers apply that data in powerful ways.
The platform also brings in Microsoft’s intelligent services from across the company right into the car. These include the virtual assistants, business applications, office services and productivity tools like Cortana, Dynamics, Office 365, Power BI and Skype for Business. Microsoft said that security is their foremost requirement, but these services do include a few things that will make the day easier for the driver.
Cortana, Microsoft’s personal voice assistant will play a crucial role here in bringing out several gadgets together or connected with the vehicle.
Renault-Nissan is the first auto manufacturer to commit to this platform to build connected cars. Nissan has already announced this partnership at their CES Keynote. Microsoft Connected Vehicle Platform will be available as a public preview later this year.