Speaking with analysts during a conference call this week, General Motors CEO Mary Barra said the automaker is developing a new generation of electrical architecture for its vehicles that would fully support over-the-air (OTA) updates. While offering few details, Barra indicated that GM’s OTA capabilities would be operational “before 2020” and be integrated into a new generation of infotainment systems.

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OTA capability will be critical to all automakers in the years ahead to leverage the applications in connected and interconnected vehicles. To this point, only EV maker Tesla has held the clear leadership position in this area although Ford recently introduced OTA capability on a limited basis to add Android Auto and Apple CarPlay on vehicles with its latest Sync 3 system. While GM has employed remote updating for OnStar services, it has not yet used OTA for any other purposes. Even though the new Chevrolet Bolt has OTA update capability, that functionality is not presently operational.

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