Toyota Connected Technology
What if your Toyota knew what the road conditions were before you tried to drive over a mountain pass? What if your Toyota told your insurance company to lower your rates because you were a good driver? What if this type of technology was right around the corner?
Well, it is. Toyota is on a mission to “free us from the tyranny of technology, making a connected life a more human experience.” What this means to you is that in the future, your Toyota may be a “connected car”.
Partners in Technology
Toyota and Microsoft got together and created a venture they call Toyota Connected. The collaboration has an end goal to make your life easier by giving you easy access to information that you need like weather or traffic reports.
What does this really mean to you? It means that you can ask your vehicle to monitor your driving patterns and submit that information to your insurance company thus possibly reducing your insurance rates.
It means that you can connect to a vehicle network that delivers real-time driving conditions rather than outdated weather reports.
In addition, your Toyota can learn your habits and driving preferences based on telematics services. Joint research done at the University of Toronto has been focused on how to deliver appropriate feedback to drivers without it becoming a distraction. These studies include how to balance an alert for erratic driving behaviour without the alert causing further erratic behaviour.
All data analysis and management is fed through the Microsoft Azure Cloud computing system.
While it may be some time before the research is done on the project, you can already see some examples of this type of research when you consider that a “Smart House” is connected to a smartphone. You have access to your home’s temperature control, the camera on your front porch and even the inside of your refrigerator with just your cellphone.
Toyota wants to bring this same type of cloud intelligence to your car. Their future products may contain technology that integrates home connectivity, smart city integration and safety. Accord to the Senior Managing Officer of Toyota Motor Corporation, Shigeki Tomoyama, Toyota wants to provide their customers with a safe, secure and convenient future mobile life.
Many of the latest Toyotas already have the framework anchored into the vehicles by way of the installation of the Data Communication Module (DCM). This technology is already in the vehicles on the United States market. It will roll out to the rest of the regions in 2017. The DCM connects your Toyota to cellular networks, which allow for data transmission.
One clear benefit of the DCM connectivity is that should you be in a serious accident, it will activate an alert to an emergency response team as soon as it detects a deployed airbag. Other safety issues include the ability to connect with a smartphone for a safer and more secure connection.
There is still a long way to go to make the new Toyotas completely connected, but technology advances rapidly, so it should not be long before you will be able to ask your car if you need to buy eggs.
You can see all of this new technology by stopping by your local Toyota dealership. Find out more by taking a test drive today.