Home TomTom brings AI assistant to cars with Microsft’s help

TomTom brings AI assistant to cars with Microsft’s help

According to Reuters, Dutch digital mapping company TomTom announced an exciting new partnership with tech giant Microsoft on Tuesday to develop an artificial intelligence (AI) powered conversational assistant for vehicles. This assistant utilizes Microsoft’s advanced Azure OpenAI service and allows drivers to “converse naturally with their vehicles,” interacting through voice with features like infotainment, navigation, and vehicle commands.

As vehicles become more advanced, automakers have been focused on integrating smart assistant technology into dashboards. Voice-powered assistants like Alexa and Siri have become ubiquitous in our homes and phones, so it’s a logical next step to bring similar functionality into our cars to handle tasks while driving. This allows drivers to access useful features while keeping their eyes on the road.

Microsoft Brings the AI Power

To create an assistant that can handle natural conversations, vast amounts of data and immense computing power is needed. This is where Microsoft lent its capabilities through Azure OpenAI Service, providing access to the advanced language models created by leading AI research company OpenAI (the maker of ChatGPT). The cutting-edge AI can understand context and hold conversations – perfect for an in-vehicle assistant.

While TomTom could have integrated an existing voice assistant like Alexa, it chose instead to custom-build one explicitly optimized for the automotive environment. As a digital mapping pioneer with over 25 years in navigation and location technology, TomTom has the specialized expertise to tailor the AI assistant to handle driving-related requests through voice interactions.

The conversational assistant can provide quick access to useful in-car features by just using your voice. Ask for directions, queue up your favorite playlist, adjust vehicle settings, and more without ever taking your eyes off the road. This promises a safer and more convenient driving experience. TomTom can integrate the assistant with vehicle infotainment systems across multiple automotive brands.

This launch builds on an ongoing multi-year partnership between TomTom and Microsoft focused on pushing AI and location technology innovations. TomTom began utilizing Azure cloud tools in 2016 to power its maps and navigation products. With this latest AI assistant, TomTom continues to discover new ways Microsoft’s leading AI capabilities can enhance its offerings.

Featured Image Credit: Erik Mclean; Pexels

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Radek Zielinski
Tech Journalist

Radek Zielinski is an experienced technology and financial journalist with a passion for cybersecurity and futurology.

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