Volvo Cars has announced that its next-generation Sensus infotainment system will be based on Google’s Android operating system. The brand is working with Google to embed the voice-controlled Google Assistant, Google Play Store, Google Maps and other Google services into the Sensus system.
This partnership of Volvo Cars with Google aims to further enhance how Volvo customers engage with their cars. Other than Google's default apps and services, the Sensus infotainment system will have access to thousands of additional apps via the Google Play Store, which is optimised and adapted for Android-based car infotainment systems.
A huge advantage of the next generation of Sensus is that since it will run on Android, new apps and software updates will be available in real-time and can be applied automatically. This means that future Volvo cars will be able to react to their customer's needs and offer Volvo drivers up-to-date information as well as predictive services.
“Bringing Google services into Volvo cars will accelerate innovation in connectivity and boost our development in applications and connected services,” said Henrik Green, senior vice-president of research and development at Volvo Cars. “Soon, Volvo drivers will have direct access to thousands of in-car apps that make daily life easier and the connected in-car experience more enjoyable.”
Google's apps come with a convenient set of features. Google Assistant provides a central voice interface for the car. This allows drivers to control in-car functions such as the aircon, use apps to play music, and send messages to people. The integration of the Google Assistant contributes to reducing distractions for drivers and allows them keep their eyes on the road at all times. Google Maps on the next-gen Sensus will also be able to provide real-time, refreshed map and traffic data, thus keeping drivers updated about upcoming traffic situations and proactively suggesting alternative routes.
Meanwhile, Volvo also continues to develop its own apps, software and connected services within the Volvo Car Group, using its growing force of software engineers.
“The Google partnership to be entered into is an important strategic alliance for Volvo Cars,” Henrik Green said. “The Android platform, Google services and Google’s working relationship with app developers in-house and worldwide will help us further improve the Volvo car experience.”