Toyota said it would form a new division to boost the company’s know-how in the fields of data management and data services development, as the connected-vehicle technologies are spreading throughout the auto industry.
The Japanese automaker announced that it would create a new company, Toyota Connected, to serve as a data science hub for the firm’s global operations, as it seeks to advance in its research over telematics, data analytics and network security services. “Toyota Connected will help free our customers from the tyranny of technology. It will make lives easier and help us to return to our humanity,” said Zack Hicks, Chief Executive Officer of Toyota Connected and Chief Information Officer at Toyota Motor North America. “From telematics services that learn from your habits and preferences, to use-based insurance pricing models that respond to actual driving patterns, to connected vehicle networks that can share road condition and traffic information, our goal is to deliver services that make lives easier.”
Based in Plano, Texas, the unit will use the power of data science through Microsoft’s Azure cloud technology to develop predictive services that “help to humanize the driving experience while pushing the technology into the background.” In addition, the new company builds on Toyota’s existing partnership with Microsoft to accelerate their research and development efforts and offer new connected car technologies, as the auto industry is getting ready to soon deploy full self-driving cars. Toyota and Microsoft have been working together on telematics services since 2011. The world’s biggest automaker is also investing 1 billion dollars in a research institute near Stanford and MIT to focus on artificial intelligence and robotics.