In an effort to make driving experience more safer, Toyota the leading global automaker is expanding its experiments in the autonomous vehicle as it has sealed a deal with Microsoft Corporation to develop services that will make the driving experience personal and safe.
Bloomberg reports on Tuesday that the Toyota connected venture would be based in Plano, Texas aimed at making smarter cars. It gave an initial investment at investment as $5.5m.
It said the project would be headed by the Chief Information Officer at Toyota Motor North America, Zack Hicks and quoted him as saying, “Toyota Connected will help free our customers from the tyranny of technology.”
Automakers are expanding connected-car services as the industry heads toward technologies such as autonomous vehicles. Telematics combines computers and wireless technology to provide services such as infotainment and real-time traffic updates to moving vehicles. Toyota and Microsoft have been collaborating in this area since 2011.
The Executive Vice-President, Corporate Strategy and Planning, Microsoft Corporation, Kurt DelBene, said the company would work with Toyota Connected “to make driving more personal, intuitive and safe.”
The new entity will study everything from cars that help each other analyse traffic patterns to use-based insurance pricing to connecting drivers with information and security services in their homes.
So in the course of time cars would study their owner’s habit and seek ways to make themselves helpful, Hicks told reporters on a conference call.
A car would make suggestions for its user, if the vehicle recognises its owner’s destination, it could suggest what to do for the owner. it may use sensors in the steering wheel to monitor a driver rate, and then relay it to a doctor.
Drivers would be able to opt out of any or all of these services, Hicks said. But he said he was hoping they would be popular enough to encourage drivers to return to Toyota when it was time to buy another car.
In January, Toyota began a $1bn, five-year investment in Toyota Research Institute Inc, which is setting up centres near Stanford University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Leading the effort is Gill Pratt, the former top robotics engineer for the US military.
Source: The punch