AT&T and LG have entered into a partnership that will see the two companies working together to further development on AT&T’s “Drive” initiative to bring new connected car services to the automobile. There are a number of companies already working to bring connected car features to newer vehicles, with Android Auto probably being the most well known, having recently been announced Google I/O this summer and of course because it spends plenty of time in the public eye. With AT&T Drive, the collaboration will allow for the capability to bring new connected car hardware and services to the market of the connected car.
AT&T is handling research and development of the Drive initiative from their Drive Studio in Atlanta, Georgia, where LG joins a collective of 12 other companies working toward the future of connected cars. AT&T has everything fully equipped to provide just about anything LG and other companies could need for this project, from 5,000 square feet of space to fully working garage bays, a speech lab, and a complete showroom to display the latest innovations and technologies that they come up with in their efforts for the Drive initiative. Drive Studio is supposed to serve as a hub, where they can “respond” to the needs and requests of automotive manufacturers while working together with the companies that are all part of the initiative and operating from multiple points around the U.S. So essentially things will happen in more locations across the country, but AT&T Drive Studio serves as the main control room so to speak.
AT&T’s Senior Vice President of the Internet of Things division, Chris Penrose, states that “At the Drive Studio we work with automakers to make the in-car experience better and safer for the driver and passengers.” AT&T is looking to companies like LG to design the road ahead, and LG themselves already have their focus set to delivering three major areas that auto manufacturers and consumers are interested in, which includes comfort, convenience and safety. Since AT&T already provides mobile internet access in some vehicles from both U.S. and non-U.S. auto makers, the efforts from the Drive initiative are the next step for the mobile carrier in bringing a better connected experience to inside of the vehicle.