Cisco’s Webex has partnered with Google for Android Auto, the mobile application that mirrors an Android smartphone’s screen on a car’s dashboard.
It comes after earlier this year it was announced that Cisco had partnered with Mercedes-Benz, offering Webex’s in-car meetings.
Android Auto, which is a conferencing feature and connects a phone to a car display, will support Webex in over 500 vehicle models, including BMW, Audi, Ford and Hyundai.
It is understood that Google expects over 200 million vehicles to be connected to Android Auto
Webex says that meetings will be audio-only to help drivers stay focused on the road.
To gain a better insight into this technology and its applications, we asked Webex’s VP of Product Management Amit Barave about Android Auto.
Just Auto: Could you expand further on how Android Auto can make hybrid working more accessible to more people?
Amit Barave: The modern work environment is no longer confined to a single space or device. Work can happen at home, in the office or on the go. For this reason, we are on a mission to empower people with seamless collaboration experiences personalised to fit their lifestyle and enable work from any setting.
Bringing Webex to Android Auto will help workers join meetings from their vehicles and ultimately stay productive on the go. This partnership furthers Webex’s efforts to transform the connected vehicle into another extension of the hybrid workplace.
I think about how impactful this kind of technology is for working parents who need to take a meeting while in the school pick up line or for professionals who do their best thinking with a change of scenery. In our book, success no longer means being tethered to a desk, and Webex’s integration into Android Auto opens doors for many to do their best work wherever that may be.
Do you anticipate that there will be more demand for this technology as the working landscape evolves in the future?
AB: Absolutely. As hybrid work becomes the new normal, there will continue to be increased demand for technology that provides flexibility, choice and adaptability for any work environment. Getting these experiences right is going to be more imperative than ever as a recent Cisco study shared that 98% of meetings have at least one person joining remotely.
Earlier this year it was announced that Mercedes-Benz had partnered with Cisco for in-car meetings: can you tell us how is this rolling out overall with Android Auto, and if there are more plans to do deals with other individual manufacturers?
We have partnered with several auto manufacturers to safely integrate Webex technology into their native dashboard displays. In 2022, we first announced our partnership with Ford Motor Company and have since worked with Mercedes-Benz to extend our auto integrations. We also support Apple CarPlay, in addition to Android Auto.
Our goal is for every professional to be able to work on the go, regardless of which car they drive. Luckily, that sentiment is shared by many automakers, and we’re working with several manufacturers to support in-car connectivity apps.