Cars running on Android

Android is now dominating a lot of industries than just smart phones and tablets. I have covered many topics related to Android use in other gadgets like watches, belts, and even mirrors. And since Android is becoming famous in other industries, it is also finding a place in the auto industry.

If I had read this news a couple of months back, I would have been surprised, but lately I’m seeing so many things running on Android that I won’t be surprised if they told us that our complete house can be managed by Android. Whoa wait, it can be. Developers are still working on that project. Does anybody have any details about it? Please share your knowledge through comments if you have any information about the Android house (I’m sure we all are curious to know more about it).

So anyway, continuing with our Android car, this one is called Roewe 350, and it had all the hype when it was launched (it is still very famous). Seems like an auto company made the right move and jumped on the Android bandwagon just in time.

It’s the world’s first car that comes loaded with Android. It’s not in a showroom near my house or else I would be there right now. It is connected to the outside world using a 3G connection that is currently operated by China Unicom. It’s got live weather reports, GPS services, text messaging and phone features. Plus it can connect to your Android smart phone using Bluetooth.

It was showcased in Beijing Auto Show and it has Android 2.1. So you’ll have real time traffic reports to help you decide the directions.

It was launched with a 1.5 VVT engine but they also have a 1.5 Turbo engine. It was expected to be priced at about 70,000 rmb (about 11,000 USD) to 130,000 rmb (20,000 USD).

The name Roewe is used by (SAIC) Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. as they bought Rover (British car maker) in 2004. Since then they have used this name in China.

Well I had no idea that Android was so popular in China as well. What’s more surprising is that this news is actually 2 years old!

Roewe was the first one, but many new cars will have Android technology, and soon. The one thing that they all will have is the Android audio visual navigation system that will help them find their way. These cars are in testing phase, and will soon be developed. Nissan and Produa are working in Malaysian and Thailand to develop cars that have Android based control panels. Of course these cars won’t actually run on Android per se, but they’ll have many collaborated apps.

Plans are still in the making, and we’ll most probably see these cars in near future. I’m sure there will be some Android cars soon running in the U.S. market as well.