The Renault-Nissan Alliance is partnering with Microsoft Corp. for the development of connected services for cars powered by Microsoft Azure, one of the company's intelligent cloud offerings. The global, multiyear agreement between the two giants promises advanced navigation, predictive maintenance and vehicle centric services, remote monitoring of car features, external mobile experiences and over-the-air updates via the new services.
The Alliance, in a release, explained that Azure was selected for it supports multiple operating systems, programming languages and tools, providing flexibility and choice to build a common platform for Renault-Nissan to deploy services to both Alliance brands.
Jean-Philippe Courtois, executive vice president and president, Microsoft Global Sales, Marketing and Operations, Microsoft, explained, "While the connected car experience is in its infancy, we believe there's so much potential to dramatically change the industry. We are partnering to accelerate Renault-Nissan's mobile and cloud strategies and unlock new experiences for their customers."
The partnership will develop infotainment and location-based services that will:
a. Allow customers to personalize and protect their settings along with the option to transfer the settings from one car to another, or lock them and disable transfer.
b. Allow customers to download over-the-air updates to, for example, have the latest autonomous drive software and collision-avoidance applications.
c. Allow car owners to monitor their car from anywhere, through their mobile phone or laptop.
d. Protect the vehicle via a tracking software that locates a stolen car and disables it at the next practical opportunity.
The Franco-Japanese union, that aims to launch over 10 vehicles with autonomous driving technology by 2020, has been ardently pursuing avenues to further its efforts towards autonomous driving and next-generation connectivity features on mainstream cars. Earlier this month, it had also announced that it will acquire French software-development company Sylpheo to facilitate its connected vehicle and mobility services programs.
Ogi Redzic, Renault-Nissan Alliance senior vice-president, Connected Vehicles and Mobility Services, said, "A car is becoming increasingly connected, intelligent and personal. Partnering with Microsoft allows us to accelerate the development of the associated key technologies needed to enable scenarios our customers want and build all-new ones they haven't even imagined. We aim to become the provider of connected mobility for everyone with one single global platform."