Two Connected Vehicle platforms are better than one. At least that seems to be the premise at Ericsson, which said on December 19 that it will be building the Ericsson Connected Vehicle Cloud on top of Microsoft's Connected Vehicle Platform (MCVP).
Ericsson says its Connected Vehicle Cloud connects more than four million vehicles in 180 countries worldwide, which Ericsson says represents approximately 10 percent of the connected vehicle market.
According to Ericsson's announcements, its Connected Vehicle Cloud performs 24/7 operations and lifecycle management. It also provides telematics, infotainment and navigation -- which is what Microsoft's Connected Vehicle Platform also provides.
By integrating with Microsoft's Connected Vehicle Platform, Ericsson says the company will "allow automakers to deploy and scale global vehicle services, such as fleet management, over-the-air software updates and connected safety services" more easily, faster and cheaper.
Microsoft's Connected Vehicle Platform (MCVP) -- formerly known as its Connected Car Platform -- is all about getting vehicles to connect to Microsoft cloud services like Azure, Office 365 and more on the back-end. Microsoft's Connect Vehicle strategy replaced its old "Windows Automotive" plan, via which Microsoft attempted to convince carmakers to embed Windows inside their vehicles.
MCVP is a platform layer on top of Azure. It gives carmakers and integration partners a way to deliver vehicle sensor telemetry into a data lake running on Azure, according to a Microsoft white paper on MCVP. MCVP isn't just about passenger vehicles; it also is intended to work with commercial and industrial vehicles, including cars, trucks, cranes, ships, and drones.
Ericsson recently signed what its officials said was its largest contracted to date for its Connected Vehicle Cloud with Volvo. Volvo committed to use Ericsson's platform within its digital vehicle services for the next five years. In December 2018, Volkswagen bought Volvo's connected car unit. Volkswagen is one of Microsoft's key customers for the Microsoft Connected Vehicle Platform. It's all one, big connected vehicle family.