Volkswagen AG (VOW) and Mercedes-Benz called on fellow automakers to establish separate platforms for data on vehicle use to avoid handing over sensitive customer information to Google Inc. (GOOGL)
“We seek connection to Google’s data systems but we still want to be the masters of our own cars,” Volkswagen Chief Executive Officer Martin Winterkorn, said today at an industry conference in Munich. “Potential conflict arises around making data available.”
With consumers increasingly expecting seamless connectivity, automakers are making more Internet services available in their vehicles as well as outfitting cars with systems that allow them to communicate with one another. Google as well as Apple Inc. (AAPL) see in-car systems as an opportunity to expand, offering systems such as Apple’s CarPlay and Google’s Android Auto to connect with people while they’re driving.
“It’s very good” that automakers are discussing their own systems for processing and storing car data to avoid becoming dependent on “third parties,” Dieter Zetsche, CEO of Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler AG (DAI), said, speaking alongside Winterkorn in a discussion at the event. “That’ll boost our position when working with Google.”