Published: Tue, February 02, 2021
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Ford and Google announce partnership for in-car Android integration

Ford and Google announce partnership for in-car Android integration

David McClelland, Ford's vice president of strategy and partnerships, said the automaker believed Google could help it address a broader collection of challenges and opportunities.

A Google spokesman told journalists in a press conference for the announcement that Google wouldn't share third-party data with advertisers through this system.

The Android operating system will let drivers and passengers use Google Assistant voice-recognition technology, Google Maps and apps in the Play Store.

The partnership can be split into two areas; Ford using the Google's Cloud service behind its infotainment system, and also using Google apps that'll directly affect the user experience.

Ford and Google have announced a strategic six-year partnership today that will help the carmaker accelerate its transformation plan and "reinvent connected vehicle experience".

The two companies will establish a new collaborative group called Team Upshift, which will make use of the talent and assets of both Ford and Google to develop anything from new ways to buy a vehicle, new data-driven ownership offers, and more. The automaker also revealed it will utilize Google's cloud services for things like data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.

Ford comes to the partnership with a new CEO, Jim Farley, determined to modernize the 117-year-old automaker in the midst of upheaval in the auto industry - with stricter emissions standards and the rise of electric and autonomous vehicles. The companies also collaborated on Ford's in-car software system, called Sync.

While we wait to see how this story fully unfurls, many have marked this as a zero-sum loss for Microsoft because it used to be the go-to infotainment resource for Ford five years ago. "We're creating this much more comprehensive relationship with Google".

Ford CEO Jim Farley said: "As Ford continues the most profound transformation in our history with electrification, connectivity and self-driving, Google and Ford coming together establishes an innovation powerhouse truly able to deliver a superior experience for our customers and modernise our business". But, Ford's implementation will be different, McClelland said. "This may include projects ranging from modernizing our plants through vision AI, developing new retail experiences when buying a vehicle, creating new ownership offers based on connected vehicle data, and more".

Auto buyers will still be able to opt for CarPlay software from Apple or Alexa virtual assistant from Amazon in vehicles, according to Ford.

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