Anticipating high-tech future offerings from the likes of Apple and Google, luxury car makers are angling to get a jump on connected car technology. According to AppleInsider, unnamed sources are suggesting the Mercedes-Benz, Audi, and BMW are considering a joint bid for Nokia’s HERE maps assets.
Nokia’s HERE is already available as a mobile app for Google and Android, and essentially offers digital maps based on cloud-computing with advanced location and services data available for mobile access. Integrating this kind of system into a car would offer some obvious potential benefits to drivers, and is gaining more currency as luxury car makers anticipate similar technological offerings from Google and particularly from Apple, which has been very busy in related R&D spaces. The company recently filed patent applications for advanced geofencing systems, and there have even been indications that the company is developing its own electric car, or at least the batteries for such a vehicle. Meanwhile, Google’s efforts to develop self-driving cars have been well-publicized.
More immediately, Apple’s automotive operating system, CarPlay, is already appearing in Buick vehicles, while Google’s similar Android Auto is emerging in new Chevrolet cars. It’s all good reason for current car makers to start looking at getting their own smart car technology, and may result in a nice bid for Nokia’s HERE division if the rumours ultimately prove correct.