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Alibaba And SAIC Launches The Internet Car

Chinese E-Commerce company Alibaba and SAIC motors have jointly launched an ‘Internet Car’ in China. The term internet car refers to the Internet of Things (IoT) where everything is connected; your smartphone with your car, your car with your home, and your home with your phone.

The car was designed and developed by the Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC). It is marketed under SAIC’s Roewe brand and sold via Roewe’s existing dealer network.

Alibaba’s share is the operating system for the vehicle’s infotainment system. The operating system is called YunOS for Car. It is based on the YunOS smartphone operating system. Alibaba wants to use various new YunOS variants to power a wide range of devices to create their Internet of Things. The devices include televisions, home-air conditioning systems, refrigerators, microwave ovens, game consoles, smart watches, and even robotic vacuum cleaners.

chairman of Alibaba’s Technology Steering Committee Dr. Wang Jian told Alizila that The difference between an internet car and a traditional car is that connected smart operating systems like YunOS will improve the consumer experience beyond just driving...Smart operating systems become the second engine of cars, while data is the new fuel.

YunOS for Car is the first Chinese operating system developed by a non-car company used in a mainstream passenger car. Like every other operating system it controls the basic functions of the infotainment system, like navigation, radio, and smartphone integration.

Alibaba has added some new and clever features. By using Alibaba’s e-commerce network drivers are able to book and pay for parking spaces, gas stations, and shops. Each user of the vehicle gets a unique “internet ID” that enables the operating system to recommend music or nearby restaurants based on data gathered during earlier trips.

One catchy feature is, the infotainment system is connected to a cabin-facing camera for making selfies, which can be uploaded immediately to the web via the permanent 4G internet connection.

The Rx 5 is only available in China.

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