LAS VEGAS--It's the classic show formula: put your product in the hands of an attractive model and people will look twice. In the case of QNX's new mobile app platform, the attractive model is the Porsche Carrera sports car.
As the cars of tomorrow gain Internet connections and applications, they'll need infotainment software that allows them to be as flexible and easily updated as your average smartphone. RIM subsidiary QNX Software Systems Limited thinks that the solution to that problem lies in the HTML5 framework and is showcasing its new HTML5-based QNX CAR 2 application platform at CES 2012.
Designed to be easily reskinned and customized by automotive OEMs, QNX CAR 2 operating system allows automakers to quickly and inexpensively develop and implement HTML5 applications and services for their vehicles' infotainment system. Likewise, CAR 2 supports Qt, OpenGL ES, and other user interface technologies and rolls in other QNX technologies, including the Neutrino real-time operating system, a multimedia framework, and an acoustic processing library for hands-free systems, hopefully blending each of these technologies in one, seamless user experience.
The Porsche Carrera that QNX will be displaying at the BlackBerry booth is a proof of concept for the new platform. It will be powered by the QNX CAR 2 platform and cloud-connected via a smartphone--presumably a BlackBerry model. Near Field Communication (NFC) combines with Bluetooth connectivity for hassle-free pairing of the aforementioned smartphone. Once connected, the system can take advantage of QNX's ultra HD voice technology, which provides 48KHz full stereo bandwidth for clearer, easier-to-understand hands-free calls.
The Porsche's rear seats face a tablet-based entertainment system that features a bidirectional connection with the main vehicle infotainment system that allows media connected to the vehicle to be played back on the tablet and vice versa. Additionally, the driver is able take control of the tablets from the front seat like a conventional OEM rear-seat entertainment system.
QNX's CAR 2 application platform already boasts the support of a variety of software and hardware companies, including TeleCommunication Systems, Texas Instruments, Vlingo, and Audi--which already uses QNX technology in its current infotainment systems. App partners demonstrating software on the concept Porsche include Poynt virtual personal assistant, Weather Network, and streaming Internet radio from Pandora, NoBex, Slacker, and TuneIn.
We expect to hear about more partnerships with automakers and OEMs after QNX CAR 2's general release, scheduled for mid-2012.