According to a recent Motor Trend article, Porsche has chosen to use Apple CarPlay rather than Google’s Android Auto for privacy reasons. It appears that Google wanted to collect more data in return for integrating Android Auto into the new 911 Carrera and 911 Carrera S models. In response Prosche decided to forgo Google and instead partner with Apple to integrate CarPlay into their new cars. That may sound pretty minor but given the direction and pace of car technology it could have far reaching results if other car manufacturers follow Porsche’s lead.
So what’s all the hoopla about? Exactly what data does Google require car manufacturers to turn over when using Android Auto? According to Motor Trend they want a full ODB2 dump including:
- Vehicle Speed
- Throttle position
- Coolant and oil temp
- Engine revs
In comparison Apple only wants to know whether or not the car is moving when CarPlay is in use. At first glance you may still wonder why Porsche would care if Google knew the vehicle speed, throttle position, etc. Part of the reason they care is because Google is working there way into the auto industry. The same could be said for Apple. Both have far reaching aspirations. Having the information would undoubtedly help Google learn more about how the Porsche 911 Carrera performs. That’s not data that Porsche and other car manufacturers will likely want to share with Google. Or is it?
According to Wikipedia Google’s Android Auto will be used in cars from Abarth, Acura, Alfa Romeo, Audi, Bentley, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Infiniti, Jeep, Kia, Maserati, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Opel, RAM, Renault, SEAT, Škoda, Subaru, Suzuki, Volkswagen, and Volvo. That’s quite a long list. It’s unknown whether or not the data requirements were different for Porsche. Regardless, Porsche decision to go with Apple CarPlay and there reason for doing so might spark some internal debate over whether or not other car manufacturers want to share their data with Google.
As vehicles and just about everything else we enjoy joins the Internet of Things (IoT) it will be interesting to see how consumers and companies react to data sharing. It’s normal for companies like Google to collect massive amounts of data on their users. The same is true for a lot of popular websites and companies that offer free web-based services. Users have been trading data for free services for years on the web and that same trade-off is coming to other devices. The difference is that users may or may not know all the data they are sharing. Even when they do know, consumers may not think about the impact of the data sharing.
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