My car is my castle. And my smartphone is my jukebox. And my email client. And it connects me to all my friends. And my calendar. And my camera. And my interface to work. The smartphone has become an integral part of everyday life. So the most important question for automobile manufacturers is:
"How do we get the smartphone into the car?"
71% of all smartphones run on the Android operating system from Google. Less than 20% with Apple's iOS. The logical conclusion? For automobile manufacturers such as Audi or Volkswagen, it is very clear: Google Android's variant has to be in the car. For this, the premium manufacturer from Ingolstadt has been from the beginning of the "Open Automotive Alliance OAA”On board and, like the Italian sports car manufacturer Ferrari, is one of the first to use Google's Android Auto.
Now the premium manufacturer Mercedes-Benz from Stuttgart is following suit and is announcing that it will join the “OAA” this year.
BMW doesn't want Google in the car
The third German premium brand rejects Google Android Auto however, continue to decrease. An absolute wrong decision when you consider the wishes of the customers. The smartphone is an integral part of our everyday life. Just like the car is. A coupling, a merging of the two systems is only logical. BMW puts forward "data protection issues" and is not willing to make the "BMW driver data" available. The following principle should also apply here: The customer decides. In this case, however, BMW decides for the customer.
If you look at the list of OAA members, it ranges from Audi to Volvo, includes the Italian FIAT group, almost all Japanese brands and also the US auto giant Ford.
Are these manufacturers wrong? All?
Or is BMW just going wrong?
While I was looking for the press release on this “process”, I was waiting for a call back from Stuttgart. Because, there was no press release on this statement. The information that Mercedes-Benz will join the OAA this year comes from an article in the "Automobilwoche.de". Unfortunately, this information does not seem to be watertight. Quality media and such. Well. I blog so if I'm wrong I correct myself.
After a conversation with the press spokesman for Connected Car at the Daimler house, one thing is now certain: there was no press release because there was no such statement before. The author of the Automobilwoche probably misunderstood something - or wanted to put a message online. At first, facts are only a hindrance.
Mercedes-Benz - Multi-Connect head unit
During the phone call, however, it was confirmed: Mercedes-Benz is working on a multifunctional head unit that will then work with Apple CarPlay, Mirror-Link and Android Auto. So - yes, you're developing right now. But no, entry into the OAA for this year cannot currently be confirmed. We are in talks with Google, but there is a need for clarification.
Mercedes-Benz, like other manufacturers, is probably concerned with data security - the approach, or the confirmation, of working on a head unit that then covers all smartphone user scenarios, but speaks volumes. In Stuttgart, unlike the Munich colleagues, it seems that they understood that the data belong to the customer. And that decides. You don't need a supervisor in the automotive industry.
Where will we experience the new “multimedia head unit”?
I bet on the new E-Class. We'll be smarter at the IAA. And I wouldn't put the topic of touchscreens aside. ...