Amazon to venture into automotive industry
The plan also includes a consumer research website and a substantial investment in electric-vehicle startup Rivian
Technology giant Amazon plans to venture into the automotive industry with its Alexa voice assistant, as per a media report. Alexa-enabled offerings are expected to grow in the coming months and years, including a significant expansion into the embedded software systems of vehicles.
This move is a part of Amazon’s growing automotive business portfolio. The plan also includes a consumer research website and a substantial investment in electric-vehicle startup Rivian.
"The real North Star for us is to be embedded with all the cars," said Ned Curic, VP, Amazon Alexa Automotive. "That's where we want to get. We're working very hard to get there because we believe that is the best experience."
He declined to comment on the number of manufacturers Amazon will be tying up with.
“Consumers should expect ‘a significant number of vehicles having access to Alexa’ in the coming years,” the report said.
According to the report, Audi and BMW Group will be the first to begin installing Alexa into their vehicles' software system. Amelia Fine-Morrison, spokesperson for Audi said that the company plans to roll out Alexa gradually across its vehicle fleet. Audi launched Alexa on the new e-tron all-electric crossover last year.
As for BMW, its “partnership with Amazon for Alexa is about providing a seamless experience between their home devices and their vehicles for their "digital lifestyles," said Dieter May, BMW's senior vice president of digital services and business models. The company led an investment round of $700 million in Rivian in February. It had also launched Amazon Auto, a consumer review website in 2016.