There were smiles all around especially in Redmond when Kia Motors announced a partnership with Microsoft to power their auto mobiles using technological support from the latter. However, this partnership seems to have come of age as just yesterday, KIA announced to power the next generation of its Uvo in-car technology with support from Google instead of Microsoft.
The KIA Uvo system allows users take benefit of helpful in-car features like satellite radio, voice recognition, navigation system through a touchscreen etc. In a press release, the Korean car maker announced the new partnership with Google:
The immediate integration of Google solutions will utilize Google Maps and Google Places to acquire driving directions and locate Points of Interest (POIs) in a seamless and organic manner. KMA and Google look forward to continuing to work together to bring innovative navigation solutions to enhance the connected car experience. The newest iteration of the UVO platform is a breakthrough as one of the industry’s first mobile pure app-based telematics systems, and now with the Google solutions and APIs, we take the platform to yet another level of enhancement for the Kia customer.
The first KIA car to be powered by Google technology will be the 2014 KIA Sorento which will be launched in the first quarter of 2013 and will be followed by many other models.
KIA gave no clear reasons for opting out of their partnership with Microsoft but it does come as a bummer for the software giant based in Redmond.