Microsoft announced that have made wide-ranging intellectual property agreement with Toyota Motor Corp. An automaker will get the license for most of Microsoft connected vehicle patents in vehicle technologies, which includes an operating system, voice recognition, gesture control, artificial intelligence and cybersecurity tools.
The companies would not disclose the financial terms of the deal, announced Wednesday. “Microsoft doesn’t make cars, we are working closely with today’s car companies to help them meet customer demands,” said Erich Andersen, corporate vice president of Microsoft’s Intellectual Property Group, in a statement.
Microsoft is looking for additional partnership with other automakers
Microsoft has already started more than 1,200 partnerships for its property program launched in 2003. Microsoft has partnered with other automakers to share technology, but Toyota’s agreement gives the automaker broad access to all of its connected car patents. Toyota has been working with Microsoft over the past year on the automaker’s data science center, Toyota Connected.
The research arm has been developing services that cater to individual customer’s preferences, leveraging Microsoft’s cloud computing platform.
“Through this patent partnership between Toyota and Microsoft, we will be able to innovate faster to deliver new, contextual and immersive experiences to our customers,” said Tokuhisa Nomura, executive general manager of Toyota’s advanced r&d, in a statement.
Automakers are choosing Microsoft because of its unique delivery end-to-end solutions from the cloud, to the device, to predictive analytics, and do so in a way that allows them to innovate on top of their existing systems.
Volvo Cars, Nissan, Harman and IAV announced last year their partnerships with Microsoft to enhance their connected car strategies. Besides Toyota, the join Ford, Qoros, Delphi, and other companies already working with Microsoft to bring their cars into the mobile-first, cloud-first world.
In the near future, the car will be connected to the Internet, as well as to other cars, mobile phones and home computer.