CES 2022: Qualcomm announces new partnerships for software

07 January 2022

Digital and connected-technology supplier Qualcomm has announced enhanced partnerships with Volvo and Renault Group, as it champions its SnapDragon Digital Platform at CES 2022.

The automotive industry is experiencing one of its fastest transformations in decades, as carmakers turn from mechanical-engineering firms into digital-technology providers. Cars and vans are becoming more advanced, relying on software more than traditional components, while enhancements in connected technologies are bringing drivers and vehicles together like never before.

At the heart of this revolution is a new type of automotive supplier, one that can offer digital systems for vehicles, rather than machined parts or services. Qualcomm fits into this emerging category. As drivers want their vehicles to be more unique and personalised, and able to update easily with over-the-air (OTA) options, the digital-platform provider is one of many finding a clear path into the automotive market.

Digital platforms

Much like the evolvement of vehicle underpinnings as the industry moves to electrification, Qualcomm has launched its Snapdragon Digital Platform to give carmakers an architecture for all the required software and connected systems within the car.

These architectures allow for:

  • Automotive connectivity – including 5G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, vehicle-to-everything (V2X), precise positioning, and power-line communications
  • Digital cockpits and visualisations that change the consumer’s interaction and experience within the vehicle
  • All tiers of driver assistance, from L1 to L2+, including vision perception and drive policy with a focus on cost, modularity, and re-usability across all vehicle tiers
  • A Car2Cloud services platform to enable device-level feature management, over-the-air updates, SIM connectivity and subscription services

The Snapdragon Digital Chassis is comprised of the open and scalable cloud-connected platforms designed for automotive telematics and connectivity, digital cockpits, as well as driver assistance. It utilises a unified architecture to deliver enhanced safety and immersive digital experiences that are updateable throughout the lifetime of vehicles.

New partnerships

At CES 2022, the company has announced enhanced partnerships with carmakers looking to take advantage of its expertise.

Qualcomm already works with Renault Group. However, the two businesses will now look to expand their collaboration with the aim to build a next-generation architecture that focuses on ‘extensible and flexible vehicle platforms focused on addressing evolving consumer expectations.’

Renault Group and Qualcomm will work to leverage the Snapdragon Digital Chassis to equip upcoming vehicles with the latest connected and intelligent solutions.

‘Working closely with industry-leading technology companies like Qualcomm Technologies enables us to accelerate the pace of innovation to keep up with the rapidly evolving trends and needs for sophisticated features,’ said Thierry Cammal, alliance global vice president, software factory, Renault Group. ‘As we maintain our position as a leading global automaker, we look to Qualcomm Technologies’ vision and innovation with 5G, the digital cockpit, and the new Snapdragon Ride platforms enabled with Arriver Computer Vision stack that are part of the Snapdragon Digital Chassis to help us accelerate the pace of innovation to help us meet the evolving demands from our customers.’  

Meanwhile, Volvo is to use Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Digital Cockpit solutions for its upcoming vehicle models, including future Polestar battery-electric vehicles (BEVs). Together with Google, the companies have developed a long-term roadmap to bring added value to Volvo customers while enabling a fast, highly responsive, and compelling user experience. 

Through efforts with Google, the infotainment systems in the Polestar 3 SUV and Volvo Cars’ upcoming BEV SUV will be powered by next-generation Snapdragon Cockpit Platforms and its suite of wireless technologies to support advanced Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities. Volvo Car Group expects to launch cars featuring the platforms later this year.

‘Our technology development with Volvo Cars spotlights the transformative potential of our Snapdragon automotive solutions featured in the Snapdragon Digital Chassis,’ said Nakul Duggal, senior vice president and general manager, automotive, Qualcomm Technologies Inc. ‘Utilising our latest hardware and software innovations to multiply the speeds of in-car computing, graphics generation, and audio processing over prior alternatives, the Snapdragon Cockpit Platforms represents the cutting edge of automotive technology. We are honoured to work with Volvo Cars to enable the next-generation experiences we are building together.’