Published on May 9th, 2016 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
Ford Invests In Pivotal
Ford has just announced an investment in Pivotal, a cloud-based software platform company headquartered in San Francisco, to further enhance its software development capabilities and deliver innovations to customers more quickly.
The USD182.2 million investment in Pivotal aims to help drive Ford’s transition to an auto and a mobility company. Ford is continuing to focus on and invest in its core business designing, manufacturing, marketing, financing and servicing cars, SUVs, trucks and electrified vehicles. At the same time, the company is aggressively pursuing emerging opportunities through Ford Smart Mobility its plan to be a leader in connectivity, mobility, autonomous vehicles, the customer experience, and data and analytics.
Expanding a relationship
Ford recently teamed up with Pivotal to deliver FordPass, an innovative consumer experience platform that launched last month. FordPass will offer new customer services, like remote access to vehicles through a smartphone app, and mobility solutions, such as parking and car sharing. Innovating and iterating quickly, Pivotal and Ford IT engineers are working side-by-side to create new consumer experiences for FordPass members.
Building on this existing relationship, Ford plans to accelerate the incorporation of Pivotal’s advanced software development methodologies and technology across the IT, product development, and research and advanced engineering teams. Ford will put Pivotal’s next-generation cloud platform and analytics capabilities to use on the company’s new mobility projects – such as its on-demand Dynamic Shuttle pilot program.
Building more software expertise
Pivotal’s advanced software development methodologies and cloud platform complement Ford’s already strong embedded software capability that supports EcoBoost® engines, the SYNC® 3 connectivity system, driver-assist technologies like active park assist and more.
Software plays a growing role in new vehicles as demonstrated by the all-new F-150 that features more than 150 million lines of code, whereas a typical smartphone operating system has approximately 12 million lines. Engineers are capitalizing on software to deliver precise control over aspects of vehicle performance such as engine and transmission calibration to improve fuel economy and for the connectivity experience by giving customers hands-free access to their smartphones through SYNC 3.
In fact, the very success of EcoBoost engine technology can be attributed to software. Software is the secret sauce to the fuel efficiency EcoBoost delivers because it allows engineers to maximize the use of each drop of fuel at a molecular level. Ford has 275 patents on EcoBoost technology and another 200 pending, with a large majority covering aspects of software controls and calibration.
In addition, Ford and Pivotal plan to open new software labs in strategic locations in both the United States and Europe. The labs will be staffed with software architects, engineers and user experience experts all using Pivotal’s advanced software development methodology. Ford’s investment in Pivotal is subject to customary regulatory approval.