Volvo Cars is fundamentally rethinking infotainment in the forthcoming fully electric Volvo XC40. Powered by Android, the new infotainment system offers customers unprecedented personalisation, improved levels of intuitiveness and new embedded Google technology and services.
Volvo Car Group is the first company to team up with Google on integrating an infotainment system powered by Android, with the Google Assistant, Google Maps and the Google Play Store built-in. The two companies have been development partners for the past several years.
The new system offers full integration of Android Automotive OS, Google’s open-source Android platform, with real-time updates to services such as Google Maps, Google Assistant and automotive apps created by the global developer community.
The electric XC40 is also the first Volvo that will receive software and operating system updates over the air*, placing Volvo Cars at the forefront of automotive connected services. The fully electric XC40 will keep evolving and improving over time, rather than it being at its peak when it leaves the factory.
“We are finally giving you the same experience in your car that you’re used to on your phone, but adapted for safe interaction while driving,” says Henrik Green, Chief Technology Officer at Volvo Cars. “And by introducing over-the-air updates for everything from maintenance to completely new features, the car can stay as fresh as your other digital products, always with the latest and greatest features.”
One of the best features of Android Automotive OS is that it is an Android operating system familiar to millions of developers, tailored to run in the car. Technology and services created by Google and Volvo Cars developers are embedded in the car, while additional music and media apps optimised and adapted for cars will be available through the Google Play Store.
The Google Assistant allows customers to get things done using just their voice for in-car functions such as controlling temperature, setting a destination, playing their favourite music and podcasts on apps like Spotify, and keeping in touch by for example sending messages.
This integration contributes to reducing driver distraction, helping drivers keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. The Google Assistant also allows you to interact with your smart-home devices from your Volvo car.
Google Maps will be able to provide refreshed map and traffic data in real time, keeping drivers informed about upcoming traffic situations and proactively suggesting alternative routes, as well as suggesting the nearest charging station en route.
This same rich and fresh map data will be used to improve the capabilities of the XC40’s Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) by providing important information such as speed limits and curves in the road to the car.
Volvo Cars also continues to develop software and connected services, using its growing force of software engineers and its digital services platform Volvo On Call.
For example, the new infotainment system will be fully integrated with Volvo On Call, offering new features such as monitoring battery status and charging levels.
Volvo On Call classics such as pre-heating your car on a cold winter’s day, finding your car in a large parking lot, remote locking and unlocking and car sharing via a digital key are also included.
The fully electric XC40 will be first shown to the public on October 16.
Notes to editors:
* The fully electric XC40 is the first car to receive larger over-the-air updates to its software and operating system. Over-the-air updates for apps and maps are already available on other current Volvo cars.
* Google, Android and Google Play are trademarks of Google LLC.
* Availability of features and services described above may vary, depending on market.
Volvo Car Group in 2018
For the 2018 financial year, Volvo Car Group recorded an operating profit of 14,185 MSEK (14,061 MSEK in 2017). Revenue over the period amounted to 252,653 MSEK (208,646 MSEK). For the full year 2018, global sales reached a record 642,253 (571,577) cars, an increase of 12.4 per cent versus 2017. The results underline the comprehensive transformation of Volvo Cars’ finances and operations in recent years, positioning the company for its next growth phase.
About Volvo Car Group
Volvo Cars was founded in 1927. Today, it is one of the most well-known and respected premium car brands in the world with sales of 642,253 cars in 2018 in about 100 countries. Volvo Cars has been under the ownership of the Zhejiang Geely Holding of China since 2010.
In 2018, Volvo Cars employed on average approximately 43,000 (39,500) full-time employees. Volvo Cars head office, product development, marketing and administration functions are mainly located in Gothenburg, Sweden. Volvo Cars head office for China is located in Shanghai. The company’s main car production plants are located in Gothenburg (Sweden), Ghent (Belgium), South Carolina (US), Chengdu and Daqing (China), while engines are manufactured in Skövde (Sweden) and Zhangjiakou (China) and body components in Olofström (Sweden).
Under its new company purpose, Volvo Cars aims to provide customers with the Freedom to Move in a personal, sustainable and safe way. This purpose is reflected into a number of business ambitions: by the middle of next decade it aims for half of its global sales to be fully electric cars and to offer half of all cars to customers via its subscription service. By then, it also expects one-third of its cars sold to be autonomous.