HomeAutonomous VehiclesAlibaba Group launches ‘car on the internet’

Alibaba Group launches ‘car on the internet’

Alibaba officials said the RX5 SUV is already available for pre-order

Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group announced the launch of OS’Car, the first mass-produced internet car powered by the company’s YunOS smart car operating system.

The new OS’Car RX5 sport utility vehicle was built in partnership with China’s largest automaker SAIC Motor Corp. The new vehicle will be supported by a cloud-based platform that enables data streaming, modeling and reporting to augment the driving experience.

“What we are creating is not ‘internet in the car’, but a ‘car on the internet’. This is a significant milestone in the automobile industry,” said Wang Jian, chairman of Alibaba’s Technology Steering Committee. “Smart operating systems become the second engine of cars, while data is the new fuel”. The executive also said that cars are a new smart platform through which Alibaba can offer internet-based services to create a better driving experience for consumers.

“Going forward, cars will become an important platform for internet services and smart hardware innovation,” Wang said.

YunOS provides drivers with features including an intelligent map with accurate location tracking without Wi-Fi or GPS, as well as integrated screens including an intelligent rear-view mirror.

Alibaba also said that drivers will be able to book and pay for parking spaces, gas stations and coffee shops through the company’s mobile payment tool Alipay.

The new vehicle supports voice commands and can automatically recognize the driver through connected smartphones or smart watches to provide personalized services.

Alibaba’s YunOS operating system is an open platform which supports third party hardware and services.

The RX5 is already available for pre-order and it is priced at RMB 148,800 ($22,300). The vehicle has been developed over the last two years as part of a joint venture between Alibaba Group and SAIC, which had invested $160 million into the 50-50 project.

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