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Porsche announced it’s integrating Apple’s music streaming platform, Apple Music, into its upcoming Taycan electric sports car. Apple Music has traditionally been available in cars via , the iPhone-maker’s auto software.
Porsche is providing drivers with a free six-month subscription to the music streaming service, which otherwise costs $9.99 a month, and three years of free connectivity. Porsche and Apple seem to make a natural pair as 80% of US Porsche owners use an iPhone, according to Porsche North America CEO Klaus Zellmer.
Additionally, Zellmer said Porsche values Apple’s commitment to privacy, as the automaker "will always be very cautious about whom we grant access to our digital ecosystem in our cars."
Porsche’s partnership with Apple is another sign of big tech’s push into the car.
- Amazon launched Echo Auto, an in-car smart speaker, to enable drivers to use its Alexa voice assistant while on the go. The smart speaker is Amazon’s play to insert its voice assistant in an environment that has historically been ruled by Google Assistant and Siri — the two assistants are available in cars via smartphones connected with CarPlay and Android Auto. Amazon has also partnered with BMW and Audi to create cars that have Alexa baked into the infotainment console.
- Rival music streaming service Spotify revealed it’s testing a hardware device called Car Thing to enable drivers to access its service in the car with voice commands. Car Thing will respond to the phrase "Hey Spotify," after which users can command it to play songs or playlists. Spotify hasn’t yet disclosed how or when it might make the device publicly available.
- Google has created an infotainment operating system (OS) that is baked into the car so drivers don’t need to connect their phones via Android Auto. Earlier this year, Google announced it would open its Android Automotive OS to third-party developers of media apps such as for music or podcasts, before expanding to navigation and communication apps in an effort to build an infotainment app ecosystem.
As tech giants get more involved in the auto industry, automakers should look to forge partnerships to expand their vehicles’ offerings. Consumers’ in-car time is rising, with the average US driver spending over 8 hours a week in their car — up 33% from 2016.
Entering the car enables big tech companies to dominate more of a consumer’s time that previously would’ve been spent with other sources, such as the radio or a connected phone app. While tech companies get more access to consumers by integrating their services and solutions into vehicles, automakers can use these relationships to attract consumers, especially if they are able to forge exclusive partnerships.
This will only become more important as autonomous vehicles (AVs) begin to hit the roads and the key differentiator between the vehicles and services of automakers becomes the in-car experience.
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- Tesla lost a $5.5 million 85-car order from a German car rental service due to quality issues
- Proposed truck driving hours regulation comes as investments in autonomous trucking tech escalate
- Aston Martin is launching a bespoke garage service for customers who want to build underwater lairs and galleries for their cars