As we exclusively reported on December 27th, General Motors brand Baojun is launching the world’s first mass-produced vehicle with HiCar – an intelligent connectivity solution developed by Huawei. Although we expected the technology to be introduced in the upcoming RS-7 crossover, it’s actually the all-new Baojun RC-6 that will be the first car equipped with HiCar.
With this new platform, Baojun and Huawei intend to usher in a new era of vehicle connectivity that will completely change the in-car experience, by using 5G network technology in addition to anticipating the next level of autonomous driving.
First presented last August, Huawei HiCar is a full-featured, intelligent connectivity solution that will allow cars, homes and smart devices to interconnect. Huawei Director for Smart Travel, Xu Jingjin, explained that HiCar uses a distributed network architecture, creating seamless connectivity inside and outside the vehicle.
Huawei’s director also said that HiCar seeks to establish better interaction between smartphones and vehicles by sharing the same applications and software as well as running through the same network. The goal is for cars, smartphones and other devices such as watches, speakers, PCs and TVs to be fully interconnected.
Overall, Huawei HiCar connectivity offers a total of seven main technologies, including:
- Instant connectivity: when entering the car, a smartphone connects automatically without requiring activation.
- One-click navigation: like a smartphone toolbar, the interface is simpler and faster to use than with previous navigation systems.
- Home control: users can remotely control their home from the car’s screen, syncing several smart devices in one application.
- Fatigue monitoring: using artificial intelligence, abnormal driver behavior can be detected with the help of an instrument panel-mounted camera and a heart rate sensor on a watch or wrist band.
- Gesture recognition: specific hand gestures can be used to adjust volume, change songs or manage phone calls.
- Video calls: manage video calls using the vehicle’s screen, microphone and speakers along with a smartphone’s 5G network connection.
- Application sharing: share a smartphone’s feature-rich Android application ecosystem with the vehicle’s infotainment system, creating seamless user experience and connectivity inside and outside the car.
With the launch of HiCar in the RC-6, Baojun is also the first to enter a strategic collaboration with Huawei in bringing this new technology into the automotive market. GM’s Chinese-market brand beat luxury automakers such as Audi and Jaguar Land Rover to the punch, who have also signed agreements with the technology giant to implement similar systems in their vehicles.
The brand also announced that the Baojun RC-6 equipped with HiCar is already in production and will arrive in dealerships shortly. In addition, the company mentioned that as of March 2020, all “new” Baojun products will feature the Huawei HiCar connectivity solution. This range is currently made up of four models: the RS-5 compact SUV, the RC-6 midsize liftback, the RM-5 compact MPV and the RS-3 small crossover.