According to sources familiar with the matter, the German car maker first picked Google’s platform but decided to ditch it over concerns that it was too intrusive.
Over the past year, the two tech companies sought to close deals with as many car makers they could to secure a dominant position on the auto infotainment market. While some auto makers created their own systems, others allowed customers to choose between the two systems. But Porsche decided to go all-in with Apple’s platform in the two 911 Carrera models slated to hit showrooms in 2017.
Porsche was especially concerned about the troves of data Google was about to extract via its Android Auto system whenever the car was on the move. The car maker declined to allow the system harvest car data and beam it back to Google’s Mountain View, California headquarters.
The company said that the decision was not made on technological grounds. The main reason were the terms of Google, which requested ‘certain pieces of data’ to be collected while the engine was on including engine revs, coolant and oil temperature, car speed and gas pedal position.
In other words, the web search giant wanted a ‘complete OBD2 dump,’ as Porsche put it, every time a user turned on its infotainment system. And that’s just ‘not kosher,’ the automaker added.
Porsche did not make a public statement on its decision, but off the record sources told reporters the company’s true motives. The data that Google wants to scoop make the secret ingredient of Porsche’s legendary cars.
Additionally, providing such data to a company that already tries to shake the automotive market with its autonomous vehicles is not an inspired idea either. Apple’s CarPlay on the other hand is less intrusive. It only wants to know if the car is on the move.
Yet, despite privacy and technological concerns, more than two dozen OEMs picked Google’s platform for their cars including Volkswagen and Audi.
Google, on the other hand, said that Porsche’s statements were inaccurate. Liz Markman, a spokesperson for the U.S. tech giant, explained that Android Auto does not collect info on gas pedal position or coolant temp. The company declined to provide a full list on what data it did collect. Google insisted that it only collected information for safety reasons or to enhance overall user experience.
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