At CES 2017, Microsoft showcases Azure and the power of software for connected cars

Arif Bacchus

We’ve already heard from Dell and Lenovo at CES, but many are still wondering what Microsoft has to offer up at the electronics trade show. While the company reportedly has something planned for Nissan and Cortana, Microsoft has also announced that it will be showcasing Azure, and the power of software for connected cars at CES 2017.

According to Microsoft, CES attendees can take a test drive in a test drive in a highly automated vehicle to understand how the cloud and artificial intelligence can enable personalized in-car experiences. The test drive will happen at the Gold Lot/North Plaza NP-2 of the Las Vegas Convention Center, and will show attendees how cars securely “talk” to other cars, how they monitor what is happening in their surroundings to improve safety, and how cars can adapt to different driving styles.

Though only a conceptual demonstration, technologies from Microsoft, NXP Semiconductors, IAV, Esri, Swiss Re, and Cubic Telcom will all be on display during the demonstration.

  • Microsoft will showcase future scenarios where artificial intelligence bots can help improve driver safety, engagement, and integration with calendars and personal preferences. Microsoft will also analyze current traffic situations and pedestrian density in real time based on sensor data such as V2X, radar, camera and LIDAR, using the Microsoft Azure Cloud.
  • NXP Semiconductors will showcase improved road safety and traffic flow via secure communications between vehicles (V2V) and between vehicles and the surrounding infrastructure (V2I). Use cases will include collision warnings, intelligent traffic lights and vulnerable road-user detection at intersections — all based on NXP’s automotive RoadLINK products. NXP cooperates with Delphi and Savari for the onboard and roadside units.
  • IAV has developed highly automated driving technology. Automated driving is a major contributor in the quest to improve urban congestion and reduce its associated ‎pollution. The highly automated driving vehicle is capable of connecting with infrastructure, pedestrians and the Microsoft Azure Cloud to enable the vehicle to react automatically and safely in its surroundings.
Renault Nissan Alliance Microsoft
(Unrelated) Photo of Nissan and Microsoft cars

Esri, meanwhile will show off its mapping and spatial analytics technology which talks to Microsoft Cortana. Then, Swiss Re will show off its smart insurance models which simulate personalized, flexible insurance coverage using Microsoft Azure technology to offer future connected mobility solutions. Lastly, Cubic Telcom will show it’s 4G LTE connectivity, high-quality, always-on infotainment, access to competitive bundled service plans that include Wi-Fi hotspot services, personal apps and more.

In a statement, Kevin Dallas, corporate vice president of business development at Microsoft reflected on how the company works with its partners:

“As cars get smarter, they need more software and analytics capabilities…This collaboration at CES 2017 is another example of how we work together to continue testing, to see what sticks, and to help automakers bring truly personalized experiences to drivers and services that learn unique behaviors and can make improvements over time.

We urge you to stay tuned to our coverage of CES, and as always, please let us know what you think by dropping us a comment below!