2019_Toyota_Avalon_600-300x200

Image: Toyota

The Automotive Grade Linux (AGL) project, an open source collaborative program bringing together automakers, suppliers and technology companies, has welcomed a number of new members which brings it to over 120. The latest to join are Abalta Technologies, Airbiquity, Bose, EPAM Systems, HERE, Integrated Computer Solutions and Sitech Electric Automotive.

Dan Cauchy, executive director of AGL at the Linux Foundation, said in a statement: "Our newest members include the some of the industry leaders in embedded, software and automotive technologies from all over the world, including our first Chinese automaker. We look forward to leveraging the expertise of these members as we continue to enhance our infotainment platform and build out functionalities like vehicle-to-cloud connectivity and virtualization."

The project aims to build a Linux-based open software platform for developing automotive applications, and to speed up innovation and time-to-market by helping automakers and suppliers reuse code rather than each starting from scratch. It is looking at software in applications including functional safety, infotainment, instrument clusters, head-up displays, ADAS and autonomous driving.

New AGL member Airbiquity is to focus on over-the-air (OTA) software updates and telematics security. "We look forward to their support as we enhance our over-the-air update capabilities and continue expanding into connected car services such as vehicle-to-cloud and remote vehicle interactions," said Cauchy.

Integrated Computer Solutions (ICS) cited its particular contribution: "Integrated Computer Solutions believes in an open, scalable and easily configurable platform infrastructure for the connected car," said Roland Krause. "We look forward to bringing our expertise in the UX design and development of powerful HMI and voice solutions integrated with Amazon's Alexa platform to AGL."

Abalta Technologies CEO Michael O’Shea added: “We are leveraging the smartphone to help automakers and suppliers create amazing connected infotainment experiences that work seamlessly across multiple platforms, and we share with AGL a dedication to creating and nurturing an open and collaborative ecosystem the helps move automotive technology into the future.”

Toyota adopts open-source approach

The AGL platform has already been adopted by Toyota to underpin its Entune 3.0 infotainment system (pictured here, in the 2019 Avalon, and first featured in the US-market 2018 Camry). This will be rolled out across most Toyota and Lexus vehicles in North America and other global markets. Toyota has played a key role in the development of the platform, having contributed to AGL for several years, and will continue to share code.

Keiji Yamamoto, executive vice president, Connected Company of Toyota Motor Corporation, said at CES earlier this year: “The flexibility of the AGL platform allows us to quickly roll-out Toyota’s infotainment system across our vehicle line-up, providing customers with greater connectivity and new functionalities at a pace that is more consistent with consumer technology. Adopting an open source development approach has enabled us to focus resources on developing innovative new features and bringing them to market faster.”

-Farah Alkhalisi