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Johnson Controls Enters Vehicle Infotainment

Las Vegas — Johnson Controls announced during International CES that it’s expanding its electronics product portfolio into full in-vehicle infotainment systems for automakers.

The manufacturer of automotive interiors and electronics also announced its first full infotainment system will launch in a 2014-model-year vehicle program in North America, Europe and Asia.

Lee Bauer, infotainment VP, said in a statement that the company’s vision for infotainment will address both automakers and consumers desire for a “composited” view of diverse information sources within the vehicle.

“Infotainment and information applications currently running on multiple operating systems will be fused together in a comprehensive driver information package that is intuitive, safe and scalable for vehicles,” said Bauer. “Multiple operating systems that can run in their own hardware space without modification will be the cornerstone of bringing automotive embedded infotainment and driver information into a Cloud-based future.”

Johnson Controls’ “fusion” approach for driver-interaction electronics will be available in model year 2015, it said, noting that its multiple OS approach and graphics-handling capability will deliver the required system performance for automakers. “This fusion approach, coupled with a new, highly adaptive interaction model that covers both Cloud- and vehicle-based information and content sources, will deliver a new level in user experience,” it said.

Johnson Controls also announced the results of an online study of vehicle owners conducted by Harris Interactive regarding interest in connected cars. In the study, 84 percent of respondents said they would like to control the features in their vehicle via a touchscreen infotainment system, and 67 percent would like to download applications directly to their vehicle.

Sixty-one percent said they would like to pay for something using a debit or credit card linked to the infotainment system in their vehicle.