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Google and Chrysler team up for new Android-powered infotainment system


You might already know about the Google and Chrysler mashup that’s bringing the Mountain View company’s self-driving tech to the Chrysler Pacifica minivan, but it looks like the two companies are doing more than just that together. Now, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles says it’s teaming up with Google to build a new Uconnect infotainment system based on Android Nougat…

No, this isn’t the Android Auto platform that unfortunately went largely ignored last year. Rather, FCA says that the connected car system will be built on the Android Open Source Platform. Building the platform on Android will provide full access to “Google Assistant, Google Maps and popular Android apps like Pandora, Spotify, NPR One and Pocket Casts,” the press release says.

The system will, however, still be mostly a Uconnect system in both appearance and functionality. As per usual, the system will feature radio and comfort controls. “We are able to maintain our unique and intuitive Uconnect user interface,” FCA Head of Electrical Engineering says.

The new system is going to be on shown at CES this week in Las Vegas, and we’ll be on the ground to go hands-on with it ourselves. Keep it locked here at 9to5Google for all the latest Android, Chrome, and Google news this week.

FCA and Google Collaborate on a Uconnect System Concept Powered by Android

FCA demonstrates features of open-source Android at CES 2017 in Las Vegas

  • Collaboration focuses on the next generation of connected car systems, using the Android open-source platform
  • Google and FCA will showcase the seamless integration of Android with the award-winning Uconnect 8.4-inch connected system
  • Android offers automakers user interface customization, a full-featured automotive infotainment stack and ability to integrate Android apps into the vehicle’s infotainment system
  • Hands-on demonstrations available at the FCA exhibit during CES 2017, Jan. 5–8

January 2, 2017 , Auburn Hills, Mich. – FCA and Google are using CES 2017 to demonstrate a seamless integration of the award-winning Uconnect 8.4-inch connected vehicle system featuring Android, the world’s most popular open-source operating system.

A hands-on concept demonstration of the power of combining Uconnect with Android is on display at CES, Jan. 5-8, inside a Chrysler 300 sedan.

FCA is in collaboration with Google regarding the next-generation connected car systems enabled by the power of an open platform and ecosystem of Android.

“This collaboration with Google has been an extremely beneficial opportunity for both companies to explore how in-vehicle infotainment and connectivity technology continues to evolve, and what it takes to meet consumers’ increasing desire for innovation of information with minimal distraction,” says Chris Barman, Head of Electrical Engineering, FCA. “With Android, we are able to maintain our unique and intuitive Uconnect user interface, all while integrating our easy-to-use systems with Android’s features and ecosystem of applications.”

CES attendees can get one-on-one demonstrations of the Uconnect system powered by the latest version of Android, 7.0 Nougat, which includes core infotainment features such as radio and comfort controls.

The Uconnect and Android integration also enable a system that is built for connectivity and compatibility with the universe of popular Android applications. The demonstration will show a seamless integration with Google Assistant, Google Maps and popular Android apps like Pandora, Spotify, NPR One and Pocket Casts.

“Google is committed to building Android as a turn-key automotive platform that integrates deeply with the vehicle in a safe and seamless way,” said Patrick Brady, Director of Android Engineering, Google. “This collaboration with FCA brings together the industry standard for connected car systems with Android to create powerful infotainment systems designed for the digital age.”

To visit the FCA exhibit, #6306, navigate to the North Hall at the Las Vegas Convention Center from Thursday, Jan. 5 – Sunday, Jan. 8.

About FCA
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (“FCA”), the seventh-largest automaker in the world based on total annual vehicle sales, is an international automotive group. FCA is listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “FCAU” and on the Mercato Telematico Azionario under the symbol “FCA”.

The transaction was executed by FCA’s wholly owned subsidiary, FCA US LLC. Headquartered in Auburn Hills, Michigan, FCA US LLC designs, engineers, manufactures and sells vehicles under the Chrysler, Jeep, Dodge, Ram and FIAT brands, as well as the SRT performance vehicle designation. The company also distributes Alfa Romeo and Mopar products. FCA US is building upon the historic foundations of Chrysler, the innovative American automaker first established by Walter P. Chrysler in 1925, and Fiat, founded in Italy in 1899 by pioneering entrepreneurs, including Giovanni Agnelli.

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Avatar for Stephen Hall Stephen Hall

Stephen is Growth Director at 9to5. If you want to get in touch, follow me on Twitter. Or, email at stephen (at) 9to5mac (dot) com, or an encrypted email at hallstephenj (at) protonmail (dot) com.