Toy­ota makes user-friendly tech

Lesotho Times - - Motoring -

DETROIT — Toy­ota is form­ing a new data sci­ence com­pany in part­ner­ship with Mi­crosoft that’s de­signed to free cus­tomers “from the tyranny of tech­nol­ogy.”

The com­pany called Toy­ota Con­nected has a goal of sim­pli­fy­ing tech­nol­ogy so it’s eas­ier to use, per­haps even get­ting rid of dis­tract­ing and com­pli­cated touch screens that now are in most cars and re­plac­ing them with heads-up or voice-ac­ti­vated tech­nol­ogy, said Zack Hicks, the com­pany’s CEO who also is Toy­ota Mo­tor Amer­ica’s chief in­for­ma­tion of­fi­cer.

“I think peo­ple are re­ally tired of fum­bling with mul­ti­ple de­vices and hav­ing this dis­jointed ex­pe­ri­ence,” Hicks said as Toy­ota an­nounced the ven­ture on Mon­day.

Like other car­mak­ers, Toy­ota Con­nected will re­search con­nect­ing cars to each other and to homes, as well as telem­at­ics fea­tures that learn and an­tic­i­pate a driver’s habits.the com­pany will also ex­plore trans­mit­ting a driver’s health data to a doc­tor or driv­ing pat­terns to an in­sur­ance com­pany so peo­ple are in­sured based on where they travel, Toy­ota said. Also, it will look at link­ing with other ve­hi­cles so they can re­port weather and traf­fic con- di­tions to peo­ple driv­ing the same route.

Ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence Toy­ota says the new com­pany will sup­port re­search into ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence and ro­bots, as well as an­a­lyse data from ve­hi­cle sen­sors and cam­eras so al­go­rithms can be de­vel­oped for self-driv­ing cars. Driv­ers would have to opt in to all of the data re­port­ing, and Toy­ota would dis­close what data is be­ing shared, the com­pany said.

Mi­crosoft en­gi­neers will work with the com­pany at its head­quar­ters in Plano, Texas, where Toy­ota is mov­ing its US oper­a­tions. Mi­crosoft bought a 5 per­cent equity stake in the startup com­pany, Toy­ota said, but the full price wasn’t dis- closed.toy­ota Con­nect will use Mi­crosoft’s Azure cloud com­put­ing plat­form to col­lect and an­a­lyse data. — AP

toy­ota in­tends to get rid of touch screens and re­plac­ing them with heads-up or voice­ac­ti­vated tech­nol­ogy.

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