Magneti Marelli: first open-source platform for the “connected car”

Magneti Marelli
Magneti Marelli

In the area of telematics and infotainment technologies for automobiles, Magneti Marelli presented the first open-source platform for in-vehicle infotainment devices.

The platform complies with automotive requirements in terms of performances and durability, and, at the same time, is equipped with software developed and certified according to GENIVI Alliance compliance specification.

The prototype was presented in San José, California, during the fifth Member Meeting of the GENIVI Alliance ( GENIVI is an alliance consisting of over 150 companies located around the world – including leading carmakers, automotive component suppliers, electronics and ICT industries – whose main goal is to guide the widespread adoption of an open-source platform for IVI (In-Vehicle Infotainment) devices.
Magneti Marelli is one of the founding partners of GENIVI, along with companies such as BMW, PSA, Intel, Windriver, etc.

Looking to the ultimate goal of the “connected car”, the automotive world is increasingly opening up to the “outside” world, to the Internet and to the “consumer electronics” devices. In this view, the connected car can receive on board rich information (i.e. traffic, advanced navigation, car parks, etc.) and high-quality multimedia entertainment; allow the car to communicate with the passenger’s consumer devices (mobiles, smartphones, tablets, etc.); enable interaction with central infrastructures for data collection and exchange . The medium-term objective is to connect cars also to the “Cloud”.

In this scenario more and more vehicles and models will have to be equipped with infotainment systems incorporating increasingly complex features, including multiple functions, high flexibility, high updating speed and ability to communicate with external devices and software in continuous evolution. In terms of costs and times, it is convenient for the automotive infotainment industry to identify a common technological environment, standard and platform, based on which customized solutions can be built for carmakers and for families of vehicles and models.

In this sense the compliance specification set out by the GENIVI, supporting the definition of an open-source platform, aims at making available to Automobile manufacturers and their suppliers a common underlying framework in order to simplify the development and shorten the time-to-market for the In-Vehicle Infotainment devices, that have historically seen multiple, parallel and proprietary developments across the industry.

The Magneti Marelli project is the result of three years of work, and it benefits from the Company’s specific and established know-how in integrating complex systems and technologies into the vehicle environment.
Specifically, this prototype of “GENIVI compliant” open-source platform for IVI is based on Magneti Marelli’s consolidated expertise on the subject of “open software” platforms for Infotainment and Telematics applications. In this sector the company has always been at the forefront in terms of its approach to technology and to the market.

Technically speaking, the platform is Linux-based, and it features hardware and software built according to “automotive” standards, in other words in compliance with specific requirements in terms of durability and performances (i.e.: temperatures, stress, response speed, etc), compatible with the operating conditions of automobiles, incorporating a connection to the electronic control network of the automobile.

The platform already includes the basic structure that enables functions such as connectivity to consumer electronics devices, display of Internet contents, wireless connections (WiFi, 3G and Bluetooth), playing of audio/video and high-quality multimedia contents, radio and digital hi-fi audio management, and installation and updating of new apps.

Magneti Marelli’s solution already offers an environment open to third-party software solutions, also looking at Android, that can also incorporate the latest and most advanced technologies on the market in the field of navigation, user interface and advanced graphics.

Thanks to its excellent flexibility, the platform will allow Magneti Marelli to satisfy specific, customized requests by different carmakers. Mass production is scheduled to start in 2013.

Magneti Marelli


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