- Ford and Toyota are establishing SmartDeviceLink Consortium, a nonprofit to manage open source software for smartphone app development for vehicles
- Members include automakers Mazda Motor Corporation, PSA Group, Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. (FHI) and Suzuki Motor Corporation, as well as suppliers Elektrobit, Luxoft, and Xevo
- Consortium focused on significantly increasing choice for consumers in how they connect and control their smartphone apps on the road
LAS VEGAS, Jan. 4, 2017 – Ford Motor Company and Toyota Motor Company are forming SmartDeviceLink Consortium, a nonprofit organization working to manage an open source software platform with the goal of giving consumers more choice in how they connect and control their smartphone apps on the road.
Mazda Motor Corporation, PSA Group, Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. (FHI) and Suzuki Motor Corporation are the first automaker members of the consortium. Elektrobit, Luxoft, and Xevo join as the first supplier members. Harman, Panasonic, Pioneer and QNX have signed Letters of Intent to join.
SmartDeviceLink provides consumers easy access to smartphone apps using voice commands and in-vehicle displays. Adopting the open source platform gives automakers and suppliers a uniform standard with which to integrate apps. Developers benefit because they can focus on creating the best experience for customers by integrating one linking solution for use by all participating automakers.
“Encouraging innovation is at the center of Ford’s decision to create SmartDeviceLink, and this consortium is a major step toward that goal,” said Doug VanDagens, global director, Ford Connected Vehicle and Services, and a board member of the consortium. “Consumers will win with new, innovative app experiences from increased collaboration and developer engagement.”
Shigeki Tomoyama, president of Toyota’s Connected Company said, “Connectivity between smartphones and the vehicle interface is one of the most important connected services. Using SmartDeviceLink, we can provide this service to our customers in a safe and secure manner. We are excited to collaborate with many auto manufacturers and suppliers who share our view.”
SmartDeviceLink enables smartphone app developers to seamlessly integrate their app functions with in-vehicle technology such as the vehicle display screen, steering wheel controls and voice recognition. With this new level of integration, drivers enjoy their favorite apps on the road in an enhanced, user-friendly way.
Consumers also benefit because developers and automakers working together will contribute improvements to the open source code – increasing the quality and security of the software.
Industry-wide adoption of SmartDeviceLink is expected to give app developers broad scale as their innovations could be applied to millions of vehicles worldwide.
Participating companies and suppliers will be able to deliver user experiences that meet their individual standards while retaining control over how much access apps have to vehicle data.
SmartDeviceLink technology is based on Ford’s contribution of its AppLink™ software to the open source community in 2013. Ford AppLink software is currently available on more than 5 million vehicles globally.
Toyota plans to commercialize a telematics system using SDL around 2018.
Popular apps such as Pandora, Spotify, iHeartRadio, AccuWeather and others are already available to Ford AppLink users.
ABOUT FORD MOTOR COMPANY
Ford Motor Company is a global automotive and mobility company based in Dearborn, Michigan. With about 203,000 employees and 62 plants worldwide, the company’s core business includes designing, manufacturing, marketing and servicing a full line of Ford cars, trucks and SUVs, as well as Lincoln luxury vehicles. To expand its business model, Ford is aggressively pursuing emerging opportunities with investments in electrification, autonomy and mobility. Ford provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford and its products and services, please visit www.corporate.ford.com.
ABOUT TOYOTA MOTOR COMPANY
Toyota (NYSE:TM), the world’s top automaker and creator of the Prius and the Mirai fuel cell vehicle, is committed to advancing mobility through our Toyota and Lexus brands. Over the past 50 years, we’ve produced more than 30 million cars and trucks in North America, where we operate 14 manufacturing plants (10 in the U.S.) and directly employ more than 44,000 people (more than 34,000 in the U.S.). Our 1,800 North American dealerships (1,500 in the U.S.) sold more than 2.8 million cars and trucks (nearly 2.5 million in the U.S.) in 2015 – and about 80 percent of all Toyota vehicles sold over the past 20 years are still on the road today.For more information about Toyota, visit www.toyotanewsroom.com.
Livio began as a consumer electronics startup out of the Metro Detroit area in 2008 and later pivoted into mobile software and web technologies. As an emerging leader in automotive connectivity, Livio was acquired by Ford in 2013. Livio is the project maintainer of SmartDeviceLink and an active contributor to software projects within the Ford Research & Advanced Engineering organization. For more information about Livio, visit www.livio.io