Volvo Cars and Ericsson developing intelligent media streaming for self-driving cars
Volvo Cars is looking to the future when its drivers can sit back and enjoy free time in their car on the daily commute. At the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) Volvo revealed that it is developing intelligent, high-bandwidth streaming capabilities with its technology partner, Ericsson, that will ensure drivers and passengers get the most out of their time travelling in an autonomous Volvo.
“We recently unveiled our design vision for fully autonomous cars with Concept 26. Now we are actively working on future solutions to deliver the best user experience in fully autonomous mode. Imagine a highway full of autonomous cars with their occupants sitting back watching their favourite TV shows in high definition. This new way of commuting will demand new technology, and a much broader bandwidth to ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience,” said Anders Tylman, General Manager Volvo Monitoring & Concept Centre at Volvo Car Group.
Interruption-free media streaming
Autonomous drive will bring a paradigm shift to mobile Internet demands. Volvo and Ericsson believe that this shift will see an increased need for consistent and high-bandwidth coverage outside densely populated areas such as city centres and suburbs.
Utilising Ericsson’s network and cloud expertise, Volvo Cars’ aim is to deliver a high-quality, interruption-free experience in its cars whilst on the move. By predicting the driver’s route and looking ahead at network conditions, content can be tailored to the duration of each trip and intelligently buffered to deliver a high quality and uninterrupted viewing experience.
By learning the most common routes and times of travel and understanding media preferences, future Volvo cars will be able to provide one-click navigation and a customised preference-based list of potential media – allowing drivers to choose routes and select content tailored to the amount of autonomous time that is available during their commute.
Volvo Cars and Microsoft enable people to talk to their cars
Volvo and Microsoft are launching a wearable-enabled voice control system. Volvo owners will be able to talk to their cars via their Microsoft Band 2, allowing them to instruct their vehicle to perform tasks including setting the navigation, activating the climate control, locking the doors, flashing the lights or sounding the horn via Volvo’s mobile app – Volvo on Call – and a connected wearable device.
Following the November 2015 announcement of a high-profile collaboration between Volvo Cars and Microsoft to integrate the automotive industry with HoloLens, the world’s first fully-untethered holographic computer, the two companies are now delivering remote voice control for Volvo cars via the Microsoft Band 2 as another proof-point in their ambition to jointly develop next generation automotive technologies.
“Volvo is intent on making the car experience as easy and convenient as possible by utilising the latest technology in the most relevant and inspiring ways. With voice control we are only just beginning to scratch the surface of what is possible with digital assistant functionalities,” said Thomas M. Müller, Vice President Electrics/ Electronics & Chassis at Volvo Car Group.
Klas Bendrik, Senior Vice President and Group Chief Information Officer at Volvo Car Group, said: “When innovating, we are not interested in technology for the sake of technology. If a technology does not make a customer’s life easier, better, safer or more fun, we don’t use it.”
The new possibility to connect to a Volvo with voice control through Microsoft Band 2 will be available for customers in Volvo on Call enabled markets later in 2016.
Potential future availability of Volvo on Call in South Africa is yet to be determined.
* Descriptions and facts in this press material relate to Volvo Car Group’s international car range. Described features might be optional. Vehicle specifications may vary from one country to another and may be altered without prior notification.