Qualcomm announced a new chipset today at CES 2022, and no it’s not going to be in your next smartphone. It’s on the Snapdragon Cockpit Platforms, and Volvo and Polestar will both be using it in their next electric vehicles.
Volvo and it’s sub-brand (kinda, they only own a small portion of Polestar), have said that this new chipset will beef up its infotainment system, by as much as twice as fast as it currently runs. This is rather impressive, as we’ve checked out both the Volvo XC40 Recharge and the Polestar 2, and Android Automotive was pretty quick and responsive in those vehicles.
This chipset is said to be able to handle the graphics, audio, and AI needs of the infotainment system with very low power consumption. That is especially important when it comes to electric vehicles. Volvo also says that it will be able to roll out over-the-air updates that will bring even more improvements to the system in the future.
In addition to Volvo and Polestar, Qualcomm also unveiled new partnerships with Honda and Renault. However, they do not use Android Automotive yet, so the chipsets may power their own proprietary infotainment systems.
It’ll run on the Polestar 3, and an un-named future Volvo EV
While we know this chipset will power the Polestar 3, we don’t know what vehicle it’ll run for Volvo. That is because Volvo has not announced any names for future EVs after the C40 Recharge which is coming very soon.
Volvo has been using Android Automotive in its vehicles in recent years, and it’s a really big upgrade from the usually clunky and slow infotainment systems that you’ll find in other vehicles. Android Automotive is basically like having a huge Android smartphone built-into your car. It’s much more integrated than Android Auto is, since it runs the entire infotainment system, and does not need your phone to work. You can read more on Android Automotive here.
Google has not talked much about any changes to Android Automotive recently, but with more and more vehicles adding support, it won’t be a surprise to see this become a bigger focus in the future. The new Hummer EV from GMC will use Android Automotive – albeit a very customized version.