It is now only five days away from Volvo’s official launch of the XC40 EV. As part of their slow drip of information, Volvo has announced that the fully electric XC40 will have an infotainment system based on Android.
Volvo Cars is the first automotive manufacturer to team up with Google on integrating an Android-based infotainment system, although the two companies have been development partners for the past several years.
Running on Android Automotive OS, Google’s open-source Android platform designed specifically for cars, the XC40 EV will have full access to Google services such as Google Maps, Google Assistant, as well as a library of applications on the Android platform adapted for vehicle use.
The XC40 EV will also be the first Volvo vehicle that will receive over-the-air (OTA) updates for its software and operating system, constantly keeping the car up to date.
Google Maps will be the navigation system of choice in the pure electric XC40. The system will be able to provide refreshed map data and real-time traffic conditions to proactively suggest alternative routes to the driver, as well as suggesting the nearest charging station en route.
The Google based navigation system will also feed information such as speed limits and curves in the road ahead to the Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) to improve the capabilities of systems such as autonomous driving.
Not a fan of Google Maps? With the Android based system, you will be able to download and use other applications through the Google Play Store, including music and media apps optimised and adapted for cars.
The Google Assistant will also be able to control almost every part of the car, including climate control, navigation, playing music through applications such as Spotify, controlling your smart-home devices, or even help send a message to your loved ones.
Volvo hopes that with the voice-controlled Google Assistant, drivers will be able to hands on the wheels and eyes on the road while driving.
The new infotainment system will be fully integrated with Volvo’s existing Volvo on Call mobile application, offering new features specifically for the electric powered car, such as monitoring battery health and charge levels.
The usual Volvo on Call functionalities such as pre-heating (or pre-cooling) the cabin, remote locking and unlocking, car sharing via digital key, and locating your car in a parking lot, will all still be available on the new fully electric XC40.