Tech

GMC Hummer EV’s tech will be powered by Android Automotive OS



GMC

We’ve known for some time that General Motors was working with Google to bring the automotive operating system to its Buick, Cadillac, Chevy and GMC vehicles. Today, at the Google I/O 2021 developers’ conference, we learned that the highly anticipated, fully electric GMC Hummer SUV and pickup will be the first models to bear the fruit of this partnership.  

During its debut, we learned that the Hummer’s cabin tech will also feature Epic Games’ Unreal Engine powering its advanced 3D graphics. We’ve also spoken with the motion graphics studio that helped to create the look and feel of the Hummer’s sci-fi software. It’ll be interesting to see how these pieces come together with Google’s OS in the production model.

Unlike Android Auto, which is powered by a connected smartphone and merely projected onto the dashboard screen, Android Automotive OS lives in the dashboard and is powered by the vehicle’s hardware. In the Hummer’s case, that means a 13.4-inch central infotainment display and a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster powered by some seriously beefy silicon.

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Google

With Google built-into the dashboard, Hummer drivers will have access to Google Assistant voice command to access music and podcast apps, Google Maps navigation, text-to-speech communications and messaging and more, even if you leave your phone at home. The demonstration video also shows Android Automotive OS interfacing with Sirius XM satellite radio and locating vehicle charging stations along the current route. Google Play onboard also means that owners will be able to install and update popular apps and even the OS itself directly from the dashboard.

In previous Android Automotive showcases, we’ve seen the OS adjusting the climate control and even changing the drive mode — a feature that would be extremely useful on a vehicle as capable as the Hummer EV promises to be — as well as interfacing with smart home devices, like garage door openers, outside of the car. However, we’ll have to wait until the electric super truck hits the road this Fall to know how deep this digital rabbit hole goes.

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Google

Check out the video linked above if but for no reason than to hear the shredding guitar soundtrack and truck commercial voiceover talk about “providing app developer with a revolutionary opportunity to design and evolve their apps for a revolutionary space.” Hilarious.

Beyond the Hummer, Google promises that we’ll see more than 10 vehicle’s globally powered by Android Automotive OS from Volvo, General Motors and Renault. Android Automotive OS can currently be found powering the dashboards of the Polestar 2 and Volvo XC40 Recharge electric vehicles.



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