Volvo Car Group and Ericsson Deliver Global Connected Car Services
ROCKLEIGH, N.J. (Jan. 7, 2014) - The launch of cloud-enabled connected car services across the Volvo product portfolio at this week’s CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas is the latest evidence of the visionary partnership between Volvo Car Group (Volvo Cars) and Ericsson.
Leveraging extensive consumer research and industry-leading innovation, the all-Swedish partnership has focused on developing a solution that supports current and future connected car needs by combining Volvo Cars’ driver behavior expertise and Ericsson’s consulting and systems integration know-how.
Volvo Cloud car services enabled by Ericsson’s Connected Vehicle Cloud include a unique Park & Pay solution, Connected Service Booking and infotainment applications, such as Pandora, Rdio, TuneIn and Stitcher, amongst many others, adding time-saving convenience and myriad entertainment options to the Volvo car experience.
The solution is implemented and operated as a managed service of a global cloud-based solution with regional and central nodes. These nodes enable efficient provision and communication of services and information to the cars. All in all, the “cloud” offers great flexibility to adjust capacity and local presence of content based end-user demands. Ericsson’s systems integration capabilities have been critical in solution design and integration into Volvo Car’s IS/IT environment and to the head-end unit in the car. The solution covers all Volvo Cars markets around the globe.
“This partnership is another proof-point that Volvo Cars is in the vanguard of innovation with a clear understanding of the importance of the car in an increasingly connected society," said Lex Kerssemakers, senior vice president product strategy and vehicle line management at Volvo Cars. "This is a strategic step forward for us that provides our customers with cloud-enabled applications and services as never before, thanks to Ericsson’s world-class services platform.”
According to Per Borgklint, senior vice president and head of business unit support solutions at Ericsson, "Our partnership with Volvo Cars clearly demonstrates the industry transformation that is ongoing in the Networked Society. Evolution of new services and experiences is being made possible by the seamless convergence of information and communication technologies, such as broadband, mobility, smartphones and the cloud.”
The Connected Vehicle Cloud is just the first step on a journey toward fully connected and integrated car and infrastructure services, and positions Volvo Cars as a major player in the connected car arena.
- Published on 07 January 2014
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Volvo Cars’ Cloud Solution Offers Total Connectivity
ROCKLEIGH, N.J. (Jan. 7, 2014) - With the launch of Sensus Connect, Volvo Car Group (Volvo Cars) reveals an updated on-board infotainment and navigation solution. Now, Volvo Cars truly offers customers a fully connected experience. The cloud-based services allow drivers to find and pay for parking from their car, discover new restaurants at their destination, stream their favorite music seamlessly and much more. Sensus Connect also offers the first-ever solution utilizing built-in connectivity supported by Pandora Internet Radio.
“Technology should make your life easier. That’s why we listened carefully to our customers when creating Sensus Connect. It’s not about offering a thousand apps; it’s about giving you precisely what you need, before you even knew you needed it,” says David Holecek, connectivity brand manager at Volvo Cars.
The brand new in-car experience includes a novel take on all aspects of traveling. Tens of thousands of radio stations can now be enjoyed in a car that is pre-heated or pre-cooled every time the customer wants to go for a drive, made possible by the remote start function on their mobile phone. The navigation system enables drivers to set destinations through their mobile device, get exciting information about their surroundings through Wikipedia and also lets them find and pay for parking at their destination. Park&Pay is the world-first integrated solution for finding and paying for parking from within your car. This application is based on car2infrastructure communication and points the way of new possibilities when the car starts to “communicate” with its surroundings.
Volvo Cars is one of few car manufacturers that strategically invests and partners in cloud-based solutions. The Volvo solution offers a branded look and feel and the possibility to remotely update content through the air and over time.
“It’s all about giving everyone an enjoyable, easy-to-use and intuitive experience. There is no point in filling a car with technology if it comes off as overwhelming, so our main focus is always to give our customers the best experience available and make it easy to digest. Our cloud-based apps update seamlessly. Sensus offers the optimal combination of input/output methods and allows drivers to turn the entire car into a Wi-Fi hotspot for all of their connected devices,” says Holecek.
By choosing partners who are the very best in their individual fields, such as Ericsson, Pandora, HERE, Yelp, Glympse and parking service providers, Volvo was able to focus on what it does best — providing a safe, comfortable and highly enjoyable ride.
“We are particularly proud to announce at CES the inclusion of Pandora Internet Radio in our launch of Sensus Connect. Sensus Connect offers the first-ever embedded solution supported by Pandora, the Internet radio service with more than 76 million active monthly listeners,” says Holecek.
Sensus Connect will allow Volvo drivers to stream Pandora via a data connection provided by the built-in modem or their smartphone. Control of Pandora features such as station creation and thumbs feedback are now available via the head unit, making access to personalized radio in the car is as easy as FM radio.
“Drivers can now seamlessly switch between their favorite music on high-end speakers and having their text messages read out loud without taking their hands off the wheel. And your car will not only tell you when it’s time to visit the garage but also will suggest an appointment for you at your Volvo dealership,” adds Holecek. “Our brand new app Connected Service Booking is only the first step in making the dealer workshop fully integrated into the digital eco-system, enabling even more services in the future. Say goodbye to expensive or outdated maps; our Sensus Navigation includes lifetime map upgrades. There’s really no reason it should be more difficult than that.”
The updated Sensus Connect includes a great selection of cloud-based applications designed to simplify the entire car experience.
“Two of my favorite parts of the new Sensus Connect are Glympse, an app where you can share your position with others to see on their phones, perfect when carpooling or visiting a friend’s house for the first time. And the entire car works as a Wi-Fi hotspot for all your connected devices, using an integrated rooftop antenna to ensure the best possible signal reception,” Holecek concludes.
All in all, Sensus Connect is there to deliver what the driver needs, when the driver needs it – to make Volvo Cars customers’ lives easier and more enjoyable without compromising safety or comfort.
The updated Sensus Connect will be available in all new Volvo models starting in May 2014. Drivers who already have Sensus Connect in their cars today will be offered an update for their system.
The 2014 Volvo Sensus solutions will include the following features among others:
- Pandora – Internet radio
- 100,000 global radio stations through TuneIn
- Rdio – streaming music service
- Stitcher – on-demand radio shows and podcasts
- Regional audiobook solutions
- Upgraded navigation system with 3D graphics and lifetime map upgrades
- Park&Pay by Parkopedia – find available parking and pay for it from your car
- Yelp – find local services, e.g., restaurants with reviews
- Glympse – dynamic, temporary location sharing
- HERE by Nokia - cloud connected services to provide seamless and connected navigation to drivers
- Send to Car – find your destination on your phone and send it to your car’s navigation system
- Wikipedia – enriched local points-of-interest information
- Baidu – local search for the Chinese market
- Refreshed HMI with graphically themed center and driver displays
- Voice control and text-to-speech
- Integrated rooftop antenna and embedded 3G modem
- WiFi hotspot in the car
- Smartphone tethering (WiFi and Bluetooth)
- Bluetooth audio streaming and hands-free calling
- Smartphone app – connecting your phone to your car
- Engine remote start – app-controlled heating and cooling of the car
Connected service booking - car knows when service is due and will pre-book itself for a convenient service appointment at Volvo dealership.
Volvo Car Group explores new safety and design ideas by partnering with high-tech sports gear developer POC
Volvo Car Group (Volvo Cars) has established a partnership with the Swedish company POC, which develops high-tech protective gear for gravity sports athletes. The two companies will exchange knowledge in order to explore new ideas within safety and design.
“POC’s products blend functional design with lightweight, high-performance materials that offer the ultimate sense of freedom and protection when things really get rough. This is perfectly in tune with our aim to make functionality and safety an emotional experience,” says Thomas Ingenlath, Senior Vice President Design at Volvo Cars.
“Just like their high-tech sport gear, our cars blend sophisticated design with strength and intelligent capability. Having the right gear – in our case the car – builds peace of mind and confidence. This in turn enables you to fully enjoy your drive and your adventure,” adds Thomas Ingenlath.
Initial focus on cars and cyclists
The new partnership will explore and use the possibilities to extend the safety knowledge and product offer for Volvo Cars as well as POC. The first results will be presented in the second half of 2014. An initial research and development project focuses on communication between cars and cyclists.
“Communication with cyclists around the car is a possible extension of our groundbreaking Pedestrian and Cyclist Detection technology. Providing the cyclist with confirmation that he or she is seen by the vehicle can make interaction between cars and cyclists smoother and safer in urban areas,” says Jan Ivarsson, Senior Manager, Safety Strategy and Requirements at Volvo Cars.
“With POC’s mission of doing the best we can to possibly save lives and reduce the consequences of accidents for gravity sports athletes and cyclists, it's a treasure to interact on cycling safety together with Volvo Cars. They have the vision, competence and experience and have been leading the development within road safety for more than 80 years, “ says Stefan Ytterborn, CEO and founder of POC.
Inspiration for the new concept car
The design of the new Volvo Concept XC Coupé, which will make its world debut at the 2014 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, is inspired by the design of modern sports gear.
“Several orange details and exterior graphics combined with bold use of matte rubber mouldings, which cover the rear of the car, add to the highly functional expression of the design,” says Thomas Ingenlath.
The Volvo Concept XC Coupé has a strong connection to both an active outdoor lifestyle and Volvo Cars’ aim to offer customers a world-class safety and support package.
“The partnership with POC will be inspiring and fruitful. Both of our companies have a strong emphasis on safety and protection. POC can inspire us to make safety an emotional experience and to create even more desirable cars,” concludes Thomas Ingenlath.