Porsche Reportedly Said “No” to Android Auto As Google Asks For Confidential Data, Google Denies It

Now that the 911 Facelift has arrived, there are tons and tons of other features to discuss other than its new turbocharged engines. However, the list of updates doesn’t include Android Auto, with Porsche’s seriously upgraded PCM infotainment system only offering Apple CarPlay.
2017 Porsche 911 1 photo
Photo: Porsche
So why did Porsche say no to Google’s interface? Well, if we are to believe a report coming from Motor Trend, it’s because Android Auto seeks to collect data that the carmaker sees as confidential.

The report explains that this was all part of an agreement Porsche would’ve had to sign in order to introduce Android Auto, but we don’t know if similar terms are used for other carmakers using Google’s tech toys.

We’re talking about most of the parameters that are usually delivered to specialized service units through a vehicle’s OBD port. This means Google reportedly wants to know your throttle position, oil and coolant temperature, engine revs and other such key data.

With Google currently being in the midst of building its own car, albeit an autonomous one, harvesting such information could be crucial for the tech giant. A very good potential answer for which Porsche decided to keep the stuff that makes its cars so special private.

For one thing, the only info required by Apple CarPlay has to do with the vehicle being stationary or on the move.

Is this actually true?

Google denies the fact that Android Auto aims to collect specific data such as throttle position or engine revs. Liz Markman, a Google spokesperson for Android Auto, declared that the company ask users whether or not they want to share certain bits of information when their phone is pared to their car for the first time.

She explained a part of the information, such as restricting typing while on the move, is used to increase driving safety and “optimize the app’s user experience”.

For the record, Porsche and Google continue to work together in the navigation field, with Zuffenhausen’s machines using Google Earth and Google Streetview.

We have to take into account the fact that the report comes from Jonny Lieberman, an editor who has provided industry insights on many occasions. Some of his reports turned out to be valuable scoops, while others were mere smoke and mirror material.

Perhaps the most relevant question here is why so many other carmakers (there’s over 35 of them) have accepted Google's terms. The list includes names such as Ferrari and, more importantly, VW and Audi.

Then again, this wouldn’t exactly be the first time when Porsche and VW have opposing views. If the report turns out to be true, it also wouldn't be the first time when Google has privacy-related issues.

We’ll return with more details on the matter as soon as we get our hands on them.
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About the author: Andrei Tutu
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In his quest to bring you the most impressive automotive creations, Andrei relies on learning as a superpower. There's quite a bit of room in the garage that is this aficionado's heart, so factory-condition classics and widebody contraptions with turbos poking through the hood can peacefully coexist.
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