Ford and Google looking to reinvent the connected car

Ford and Google are to create a new partnership designed to accelerate the automobile giant’s digital transformation, and reinvent the connected vehicle.

The two firms are creating a new collaborative group, called Team Upshift, to leverage the talent and assets of both companies and unlock personalized consumer experiences and data-based opportunities. These will potentially include new retail options and ownership offers based on connected vehicle data.

"As Ford continues the most profound transformation in our history with electrification, connectivity and self-driving, Google and Ford coming together establishes an innovation powerhouse truly able to deliver a superior experience for our customers and modernize our business," said Jim Farley, President and CEO of Ford.

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Ford will additionally utilize Google Cloud as its preferred cloud provider to make use of the tech giant’s expertise in data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. This will allow Ford to:

  • Further improve customer experiences for customers with differentiated technology and personalized services
  • Accelerate modernization of product development, manufacturing and supply chain management, including exploration of using vision AI for manufacturing employee training and even more reliable plant equipment performance
  • Fast track the implementation of data-driven business models resulting in customers receiving real-time notices such as maintenance requests or trade-in alerts

"From the first moving assembly line to the latest driver-assist technology, Ford has set the pace of innovation for the automotive industry for more than 120 years," said Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google and Alphabet. "We’re proud to partner to apply the best of Google’s AI, data analytics, compute and cloud platforms to help transform Ford's business and build automotive technologies that keep people safe and connected on the road."

From 2023, millions of Ford and Lincoln vehicles will be powered by Android, with Google apps -- including Google Assistant, Google Maps and Google Play -- built in.

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