General Motors announced today that it is joining the Eclipse Foundation, one of the world’s largest open source software foundations. It has also contributed “uProtocol” as a starting point for greater standardization, enabling increased software productivity across the automotive industry that can lead to easy-to-use, software-enabled customer experiences. This protocol aims to speed up software development by streamlining the creation of software that is distributed across multiple devices within vehicles as well as across the cloud and mobile.
GM will participate in the Eclipse Foundation’s Software Defined Vehicle (SDV) Working Group, which is focused on accelerating innovation of automotive-grade software stacks using open source and open specifications developed by and for a growing community of engineers and member companies. Collaborators on GM’s Ultifi software platform including Microsoft and Red Hat, as well as multiple other automakers, participate in the group.
“By joining the Eclipse Foundation’s SDV Working Group, we aim to bolster collaboration within the industry to increase software reuse and interoperability across the automotive industry, therefore benefitting customer experiences at scale,” said Frank Ghenassia, executive chief architect of Software Defined Vehicles at General Motors. “By creating an open, shared software-defined vehicle protocol, we hope we can enable software to be easily shared across multiple companies and across smartphones, vehicle computers and cloud services. We hope others join us in this pursuit so customers can enjoy the benefits.”
With software-defined vehicles expected to grow in number and capability in the coming years, the potential exists for a fragmented ecosystem where apps and software for each automaker require custom code, creating walled gardens that lead to more work and less scalability while taking longer to reach customers.
This brought the team to develop uProtocol, a standard with the potential to connect automotive applications and services everywhere — not just in GM products, or even just in vehicles — but to create efficiency across the phones and other devices talking to vehicles as well. Introduced at a recent Eclipse Foundation event in Lisbon, Portugal, uProtocol is not owned or trademarked by GM, but will serve as a call to action for other companies to rally around a set of technologies that can be collaboratively deployed. This is a critical time, as GM is preparing to deploy its Ultifi¹ software platform at scale across its global portfolio of electric and internal combustion vehicles sold through the Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC brands in the coming years, and an opportunity for all automakers, suppliers and others to align around standards that can benefit developers and consumers alike.
“We are excited that GM is joining the Eclipse Software Defined Vehicle industry collaboration. They have clearly recognized the fundamental shift to collaborative open source software development that is taking place within the automotive market,” said Mike Milinkovich, executive director of the Eclipse Foundation. “Their contributions will help enable faster time-to-market, reduced development costs, new sources of revenue and new service models for the entire industry.”
SOURCE: General Motors