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Android 9 Porting for In-Vehicle Infotainment System of Electric SUVs

About the Customer:

Our client is a US-based electric vehicle manufacturing company creating a production line of SUVs.

Business Challenges:

  • The customer desired to deploy a cutting-edge In-Vehicle Infotainment (IVI) system for their electric SUV project. The IVI system was expected to be powered by Android Automotive OS, based on Android 9.
  • Our 13+ years expertise in the design and development of firmware for automotive embedded systems encouraged them to partner with us for this project.

Watch the Story Unfold:

The Embitel Solution:

  • Our solution included the design and development of the software for an IVI system that runs on Android Automotive OS. It includes navigation, display of car functionalities, Bluetooth connectivity, HVAC (Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning), driver and passenger seat temperature, etc.
  • We undertook the responsibility of initially designing the software for a reference platform while the production hardware was being developed by the customer. In the subsequent phase of the project, we deployed the software on the production-ready hardware and performed elaborate testing.
  • The IVI system communicates through Ethernet with a Windows based system that handles the entertainment functionalities accessed by passengers.
  • The scope of the project also included the functionality to cast screens from the Windows based system to the IVI and transfer data from this system to the vehicle speakers. However, the cast data should only include information relevant to the driver.
  • Elaborate testing of each of the software modules was performed throughout the project life cycle. This ensured that the product was very robust.

Key Modules of the IVI System:

  • Media – The media player included in the IVI system has Bluetooth connectivity, WiFi, USB, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto Projection, etc.
  • Phone – The driver can access phone contacts and call history by establishing Bluetooth connectivity with a phone. He/she can also make/receive calls.
  • Event Manager/Priority Manager – We developed a custom module for managing priority of events, the Custom Event Manager.
  • Home Screen – A customised home screen was developed for the IVI system to cater to the client’s unique requirements.
    • Home screen is split into different module areas
    • There is a framework to handle interaction between modules
    • Animation was incorporated for the appearance of a full screen when a tile is clicked
  • Dash Camera – An MIPI CSI camera is attached to the IVI system. This is capable of monitoring driver distraction and recording the journey. This recording may be useful in the event of an accident.
  • Bluetooth Audio – When a phone is connected to the IVI system and a media file is played on the phone, the car speakers are engaged immediately.
  • CAN Stack Integration – The IVI system integrates with the CAN Stack to get the operating conditions of the vehicle.
  • Reverse View Camera – The Infotainment system displays the rear view of the vehicle when the reverse gear is engaged.
  • OTA Update FeatureOver-the-Air (OTA) update feature has been implemented for IVI firmware through a cloud platform.
  • Power Management – A critical feature of the IVI system is power management. This module manages power, display and associated background tasks.
  • Radio – AM/FM HD radio was included in the IVI system.
  • Car Audio – The vehicle includes 6-8 speakers distributed across 3 rows of seats. The Android Infotainment system connects with these speakers and delivers superior audio quality.
  • Boot Time Optimisation – Optimising the boot time of the IVI system was a critical phase of this project.
  • Telematics Support – The telematics system enables vehicle tracking, idling time, engine diagnostics, driving conditions, fuel consumption and much more.
  • GDPR Guidelines – Country-based GDPR conditions were followed while incorporating features such as phonebook and dash camera.

Embitel Impact:

  • Our team of experienced embedded engineers worked on the development of various features of the Android IVI system in a phased manner.
  • The software was first deployed on a reference platform and tested thoroughly while the production hardware was being built. Subsequently, it was integrated with the production hardware and rigorous testing was performed. This strategy enabled the accelerated progress of the development activities and reduced time to market.

Tools and Technology:

  • Android Automotive OS, based on Android 9
  • The latest Android development architecture proposed by Google was used for the design of the IVI system.
  • BUSMASTER and PCAN-View to simulate, analyse and evaluate CAN system data.

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