The world of auto recycling is all about salvaging usable parts of a car or other vehicle. In a recent development, Ford is turning auto recycling on its head. Here, it’s not about what they’re taking out, but what they’re bringing in.
BlackBerry, one of the first leaders in smartphone technology, recently announced they will be working with Ford to integrate their technology into Ford’s vehicles. While it might seem like a smartphone company and a motor company might not have a whole lot of reasons to come together, this partnership is an example of the ever-increasing importance of technology in our lives.
Ford currently runs a BlackBerry operating system known as the QNX secure operating system. BlackBerry, which has stopped producing their own unique line of smartphones, has now turned to focusing on making software. Their aim is not to replace the QNX operating system but rather to expand it through new innovations.
New Fords with BlackBerry technology will have a QNX Neutrino Operating System, hypervisor, QNX audio processing software and Certicom security technology. This is all part of an endeavor to bring Ford vehicles, and transportation as we know it, into the future.
Self-driving cars are one of the most popular examples of technology changing the face of transportation. Ford plans to have them available for car-sharing purchases by 2021 and for individual purchase by 2025. With the new BlackBerry technology, Raj Nair, executive vice president of product development and chief technological officer at Ford anticipates that their vehicles will be more desirable than ever.
“With the success of our Sync 3 system globally, which is based on the BlackBerry QNX operating system, we understand the importance of the connected car experience to our customers, Nair said. “Growing our expertise, experience and use of the Blackberry QNX embedded software platforms will help ensure we deliver the high-quality, highly secure experience that our customers expect.”
BlackBerry CEO John Chen is enthusiastic about the partnership as well.
“The future of the automobile is all about embedded intelligence, I believe our expertise in secure embedded software makes us the preferred technology provided to put the smart in the car,” Chen said. “Ford is an industry leader, and the opportunity to contribute our world-class technology to their products is a privilege. Ford’s expanded application of our software and services illustrates the diverse and broad value we can bring to market.”
The integration of software such as BlackBerry’s into Ford vehicles could just be the start of a new technological wave where software brands and auto manufacturers work together. Though BlackBerry might not have the fame of Windows or Apple, they could very well be sparking a new revolution that will make it so every auto manufacturer wants to have a software company by their side, to ensure the best ride possible. Companies such as Apple, as well as Uber and Google, are focusing heavily on self-driving car technology. With this development, BlackBerry could possibly get a leg up on their competition, or at least show how ready to compete they are.
Having an operating system integrated into each car will also ensure consistency across the board for things like navigation. Rather than using GPS devices of different brands or navigation via smartphones, this technology will allow for all Ford drivers to have the same experience when it comes to navigating their vehicles on the roads and highways.
According to John Wall, general manager of QNX, their software is used by over 40 auto manufacturers, including Ford. With this most recent development, Ford expects his company will be in demand for use by other companies as well.
“We have other opportunities,” Wall said.
It remains to be seen where this exciting endeavor takes not only Ford and Blackberry but also technology as a whole. It could set a strong precedent for how software is integrated into vehicles in a way we might have not previously considered.