GM vehicle software platform to 'reimagine' ownership experience

October 01, 2021 // By Rich Pell
Vehicle software platform to 'reimagine' ownership experience
Automaker General Motors has announced an end-to-end software platform designed to unlock new vehicle experiences and connect customers’ digital lives.

The platform, called Ultifi, is designed to help enable the frequent and seamless delivery of software-defined features, apps and services to the company's customers over the air. It offers the potential for more cloud-based services, faster software development, and new opportunities to increase customer loyalty.

The platform builds on the functionality of the company's Vehicle Intelligence Platform (VIP) advanced electrical architecture. VIP-enabled vehicles today provide over-the-air capability, plenty of data bandwidth, robust cybersecurity and lightning fast processing power.

On top of this foundation, says the company, its engineers will separate key software into a new centralized layer that acts as a powerful hub for vehicle systems. The Ultifi platform will then enable accelerated development and deployment of software and applications over the air to millions of customers, without affecting basic hardware controls.

“GM has decades of experience writing vehicle software, creating a solid foundation to build on,” says Mark Reuss, GM president. “Now with Ultifi, we will be able to improve our software continuously, and deliver new features and apps to customers in a fraction of the time.”

Similar to a smart phone, GM customers can expect regular updates and will be able to choose from a suite of over-the-air upgrades, personalization options, and new and exciting apps. This customization, says the company, will reimagine the ownership experience, as enabled vehicles will have access to the latest software and capabilities. Some of these upgrades and settings can be saved to authenticated accounts, so they can be transferred between similarly equipped GM vehicles.

Users will benefit from Ultifi’s advanced cloud-based connectivity to seamlessly integrate important aspects of their digital lives, says the company. In the future, for example, internal cameras could be used for facial recognition to start the vehicle’s engine. Based on route planning and GPS, teen driver settings could be adjusted for extra caution in a school zone or vehicles could even communicate with a smart home en route

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