Android In The Car Gets Real At CES [Report]

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Google and Audi plan to announce a partnership to build in-car dashboard systems based on Android, according to a new report.

The deal will be rolled out Jan. 7 at the big International CES trade show in Las Vegas, says The Wall Street Journal, with the companies also set to reveal others involved in the collaboration, including Nvidia.

Android would likely replace Audi’s in-house platform, called MMI, which already uses Google Maps and Google Earth data. The Android initiative would compete in the marketplace against Apple’s iOS in the Car, announced last June at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference, and also MirrorLink, developed by the Car Connectivity Consortium.

Google is reportedly intending to use Miracast to connect Android devices and in-dash screens and computers. Earlier reports said Google would announce at CES an industry consortium and new communications standards for the Android in the Car initiative.

Even high-end electric automaker Tesla may be embracing Android. Tesla chief Elon Musk announced earlier this year his decision to add Android emulation and a Google Chrome browser to the 17-inch screens in Model S cars. Both Tesla-specific apps and general-purpose Android apps could run on it, according to reports. The new Android support could hit cars by late next year, according to Musk.

For those who can’t wait for Android in the Car, it’s also possible to just build a Nexus 7 into the dash.

Actually, all these reports of Android coming to cars is fantastic news. That means iOS in the Car will have some real and open competition that’s more aggressive and flexible than MirrorLink, which probably won’t be able to hold its own against the Silicon Valley giants.

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