Driverless cars appearance prompted the need for the development of special applications. However, unlike usual mobile services, connected apps are designed to work concurrently with a multitude of connected cars.
Ignite Ltd, outsourcing company focusing on software development, came up with a list of trendy apps and services in the sphere of connected cars. What approaches to connected car app development are currently on the first place? Let’s crack on the company’s version.
Onboard human-machine interface (HMI) apps are now in your smartphone
The lifecycle of cars lasts far longer compared to smartphones, so performance and operating speed of gadgets will grow. In order to keep track of device update, inbuilt systems also have to be upgraded all the time. However, no matter how car manufacturers try to move with the times, hardware will always stay behind.
infotainment software quickly becomes outdated thus limiting the possibilities of new applications. Those who buy premium features understand that their purchase will soon become a thing of the past.
That is why more and more manufacturers make attempts to connect automobile software with a user’s smartphone. Such solutions allow to keep new connected car technologies up-to-date as long as possible.
Apps for smartphones and onboard infotainment platforms
Initially, the problem of connected car mobile apps lied in a multitude of unjustified and even dangerous features developers offered.
Connected car apps have to comply with the requirements that are not taken into account when developing other services. For example:
- voice control has to be the main interaction means between a driver and a car onboard system not to interrupt the driving process;
- video, ads, and the need for typing are not allowed;
- any notifications should be soft not to detract a driver.
The only way to tackle this problem is training developers to understand the peculiarities of the connected car market. For example, auto group Ford helps developers in all possible ways by launching special financing programs aimed at OEM systems. Ford Motor Company representatives ensure that cooperation with carmakers would help developers better understand the market peculiarities.
What is more, Ford offers developers to focus on the adaptation of the existing apps, not designing them from scratch. The company explains this position by a burgeoning state of the connected car industry.
Application programming interface (API) development
Since the automakers strive to create mobile apps and services interacting with infotainment systems for vehicles, special software is needed to implement it – API.
development of APIs that interconnect all driverless car services exposes big prospects for app creators. API can not only integrate various technologies but is also used for third-party developers’ packages.
What is more, implementation of various APIs allows a vehicle to cooperate with all popular smartphones with no restriction to a single manufacturer. This would ensure extended interconnection and cross-platform compatibility.
The depicted development area has many prospects since carmakers are ready to outsource API projects to third-party developers. For example, Ford presented the suite of APIs called ‘AppLink’ used by developers to access a manufacturer’s communications system.
Onboard diagnostic system (OBD-II) development
Connected cars may reduce the risk of traffic accidents. Besides, real-time car diagnostics helps prevent serious malfunctions.
This system has a lot of application cases. For example, when used together, OBD-II data and smartphone possibilities would help beginning drivers better understand vehicle maintenance.
Thus, the popularity of OBD II is constantly increasing. Drivers may get extended information on car performance and plan maintenance operations.