An ecosystem in the making?
Data and software are the new drivers of automobiles especially as autonomous vehicles get ever closer. Google is the exemplar of managing and exploiting data.
This is the danger to auto manufacturers who risk becoming commodity assemblers as electronics replace the complex parts and components of combustion engine powered vehicles. Even first mover Tesla with its software expertise is running into that challenge. In fact, Google is said to have almost bought Tesla when it first ran into financial troubles.
Dyson, the exemplar of electric motor engineering is launching electric & autonomous vehicles. Probably manufacturing them in or near China to exploit the APAC market potential.
Battery innovation, a key to range and utility, is another key technology.
Auto manufactures will have to decide which ecosystem partners will ensure they keep a value-add role in delivering mobility, value and convenience to consumers world-wide.
Not an easy challenge.
By partnering with Google, Renault -Nissan-Mitsubishi ups the ante on rival automakers to partner with tech companies instead of developing their own software ecosystems. While this may win customers over, it also means potentially ceding control over valuable user data to companies like Google and Apple. Mos told WSJ that Google will have access to data collected from its in-car apps, but must ask for user permission first.