Motortrades Insight Magazine Online

Microsoft's Windows Azure cloud platform to be used by Qoros to develop car infotainment devices

Ref:A0387
Published: 23 May 2013

windows azure


The innovative in–house developed connected infotainment service, ''QorosQloud'', from new international car brand, Qoros, will introduce several capabilities never before seen in a production vehicle, bringing a new perspective to the way motorists interact with their cars.


‘QorosQloud’ will offer a range of easy-to-use entertainment, navigation, communication, and vehicle monitoring functions that connect with the Windows Azure cloud platform, which was publically previewed in China earlier today.  Windows Azure will be operated in China by 21ViaNet.  


Microsoft Corp. will be the first multinational organization to make public cloud services available in China.  Because Windows Azure also has a strong presence in Europe, Microsoft is the ideal partner for Qoros as it develops a range of cars for sale in both markets.  Qoros is the first car maker in China to bring in-car infotainment services to market that use Windows Azure.


windows azure


QorosQloud services are developed and tested in collaboration with Microsoft to ensure they fully exploit the powerful capabilities of the Windows Azure cloud platform, along with its reliability, flexibility, and great value.  The result of Qoros’ strategic objective to innovate and be creative in meeting the lifestyle needs of the modern consumer, QorosQloud provides more than 30 services, including those from the major Chinese content providers and social media networks.


Accessed through an advanced eight-inch infotainment touchscreen which will be fitted as standard to the full range of Qoros models, QorosQloud services can also be accessed via the user’s smartphone, tablet, PC or Mac, which can seamlessly connect through the Windows Azure cloud.  QorosQloud creates a closer connection than ever between driver, vehicle and the digital world, enabling motorists to remain always connected to navigation and traffic information, their social networks, and the car’s condition, maintenance and service requirements.


Microsoft and 21ViaNet worked together to announce that a public preview of Windows Azure, operated by 21Vianet, will be available for sign-up in China on June 6t.  During today’s presentation a pre-production Qoros 3 Sedan was showcased to demonstrate how the platform’s capabilities will be harnessed by QorosQloud services.  The press conference was hosted by Microsoft China CEO and President, Ralph Haupter with Qoros Vice-Chairman Volker Steinwascher as a special guest at the press conference.


windows azure


“The way that Qoros is already using Windows Azure is amazing,” explained Ralph Haupter, Chairman and CEO of Microsoft Greater China Region.  “QorosQloud demonstrates the reliability, flexibility and undeniable value of Windows Azure for solving complex business challenges in China.  We are proud to provide the best cloud platform with the best technical support to enable Qoros to introduce its infotainment and telematics solution.”


Qoros Vice-Chairman, Volker Steinwascher, added: “The cooperation between Qoros and Microsoft fully embodies our brand concept: a Qoros is far more than merely a mode of transportation.  Not only are we creating elegant cars that enable a perfect fusion between the driver, the car, modern technologies and connectivity, but we also deliver functionality that goes beyond driving.”


Human-centric convenient operation


Replacing the array of switches and buttons that blights many modern car interiors, the advanced eight-inch capacitive touchscreen that delivers the QorosQloud service occupies a prominent position in the central console and will be standard in all Qoros models.


The advanced in-car interface was designed and developed in-house with the support of global experts to safely manage information displays for minimal driver distraction and to optimize ease-of-use while on the move.


The innovative touchscreen user-interface is based on finger ‘swipes’ and taps that will be familiar to anyone who uses smartphones and tablets, and Qoros’ touchscreen is unique in the industry in responding to multi-touch gestures.  Answering a phone call, for example, is achieved with a simple finger swipe towards the driver, anywhere on the eight-inch screen.


The modern consumer will benefit from a seamless transition of user experiences between mobile devices outside the car and QorosQloud infotainment services inside the car.


All-round intelligent navigation technology


QorosQloud’s state-of-the-art navigation service goes far beyond providing accurate turn-by-turn voice guidance and points-of-interest (POI) searches.  It incorporates the most advanced traffic information system in China, providing incident reports, highly accurate information on traffic delays, and real-time updates for travel and arrival times.  It also delivers the most precise traffic information on smaller roads, resulting in a navigation system that automatically provides the most reliable real-time suggestions for the fastest route to the destination.


windows azure


While QorosQloud also synchronizes with the user’s smartphone and calendar, it is the world’s first system to integrate journey times. As a result, appointment alerts on users’ smartphones, tablets or home and office computers incorporate the time it will take to travel to the appointment.


As QorosQloud integrates the user’s mobile devices with the car, it is even capable of incorporating the full door-to-door time into journey planning, including the walk to where the car is parked.  It can intelligently recommend the optimized route in consideration of traffic conditions and can suggest accommodations and restaurants along the journey. And once the user is near the desired destination, it can even advise the driver of parking space availability in the vicinity.


QorosQloud allows drivers unprecedented control and personalization of their driving-related information.  Trips and points-of-interest can be customized or even created anew, and can be shared with friends.  And with the capability of having their own accounts, different drivers can have their own personally tailored experience, even if they drive the same car.


Of course, mobile phones can be connected to the system through Bluetooth, USB and audio input interfaces that are compatible with most devices.


Comprehensive vehicle monitoring


Fully utilizing the Windows Azure platform, QorosQloud creates a comprehensive information portal, connecting the driver, the car and the digital world.  A few simple taps on the eight-inch touchscreen enables the user to access information on servicing and maintenance schedules, and QorosQloud is the first infotainment service in the world with which motorists can select and book an appointment with the dealer through the car’s in-dash touchscreen.


QorosQloud will also automatically send an alert to get the emergency services dispatched if the car is involved in an accident.  This unique service is standard in all QorosQloud services.


Real-time monitoring and display of driving style and fuel consumption can also help drivers to improve the efficiency and safety of their driving.


Instant information sharing


QorosQloud enables the car to become an integrated part of the modern consumer’s digital, connected lifestyle.  It is the first infotainment system in China to enable users to choose when to check-in to their social media networks, which is sure to appeal to those who are used to sharing every important moment with their contacts.  It also allows them to access updates from their social networks and to share their driving experiences, interests, favourite driving routes and pictures.


As a new international and independent car brand, Qoros is developing a range of models to European engineering, quality and safety standards.  Introducing an innovative digital ecosystem – that runs on Windows Azure, operated by 21Vianet, – is an example of Qoros’ focus on delivering solutions that meet the demands and requirements of modern consumers in markets around the world.

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