The driving information app Waze is now available with Google Assistant in English on Android phones. While Google Maps tells drivers where to go, Waze helps them find the fastest route and avoid tolls. All of its data is sourced by the drivers themselves, who contribute information regarding potholes, tolls, and traffic. To access this information, users can say “Hey Google, report traffic” or “Hey Google, avoid tolls,” according to a recent blog post from Austin Chang, Google Assistant’s Director. He writes,
“Voice commands in the car help minimize distractions so you can focus on the road. We look forward to continue making your driving experience even better with help from the Google Assistant.”
Toyota Adds Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa to 2018 Cars
Google Assistant isn’t the only smart home platform to be integrated into cars. Recently, Toyota announced that they were adding Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa directly into 2018 Camrys and Siennas, no mobile device required. These platforms will also be available on most 2019 and 2020 vehicles, beginning with the 2019 Toyota Avalon. To install these platforms, car-owners must return to Toyota dealerships where they will be serviced.
Volkswagen AG Invests Billions to Create Smart Cars
In the same vein, Volkswagen announced that they will invest about four billion dollars in developing digital businesses and IoT products for their cars by the year 2025. The company wants to create a cloud computing program that will connect customers with their vehicles, making the car their central IoT hub. The system would enable wireless software updates, taking after Tesla. As the Internet of Things and the smart home become more and more commonplace, it is not surprising that companies like Toyota and Volkswagen are focusing on cars as well as homes.