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March 05, 2012

Intel Launches Huge Telematics Initiative

By Tracey E. Schelmetic, TMCnet Contributor

When you think Intel (News - Alert), your usual first thought isn't “cars,” but the chip giant would appear to be ready to go into the automotive market. It recently announced that it will be investing a great deal of money on technologies that will help spur innovation and product development that will enable new and innovative “connected car” experiences.

What's a “connected car” experience? Telematics, or products and technologies for in-vehicle “infotainment” and communications that will allow drivers to interact both with their cars and the world around them through road-safe media.

Specifically, Intel says its investments will go to a new Automotive Innovation and Product Development Center, expansion of Intel Labs Interaction and Experience Research (IXR) in automotive, an academic outreach program, and the establishment of the $100 million Intel Capital Connected Car Investment Fund.

“In today's mobile world, personal computing touches every part of consumers' daily lives while at home, at the office and on the road,” said Intel President and CEO Paul Otellini (News - Alert) in a press release. “By broadening our research efforts, academic and capital investments and opening the Automotive Innovation and Product Development Center, Intel is deepening its understanding of how people interact with their cars and how Intel innovations can enhance the automotive experience.”

The Automotive Innovation and Product Development Center, Karlsruhe, Germany, will serve as Intel's global center of competence for the development of products and technologies for in-vehicle infotainment and telematics solutions for the connected car. The center will optimize Intel technologies for applications and services as well as capabilities for consumer electronics integration, performance optimization and system design.

Intel's announcement also included plans for a comprehensive academic program that includes fundamental and applied research, curriculum development and internship programs to foster the exchange of innovative ideas among academia, Intel and the automotive industry.

In addition, the company plans to expand Intel Labs Interaction and Experience Research, where the company and its customers plan to obtain valuable insights into consumer experiences in the vehicle. Intel aims to apply that knowledge to the development of technology solutions for the vehicle and transportation infrastructure to make the driving experience more enjoyable, intuitive and safe.

Finally, Intel Capital (News - Alert) became the first global technology investment organization to announce an investment fund focused on fostering automotive technology innovation. The Intel Capital Connected Car Fund aims to accelerate the seamless connection between the vehicle and consumer electronic devices as well as drive new in-vehicle applications, services and differentiated user experiences based on Intel technologies.

Edited by Jennifer Russell
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