Volvo launches Google Assistant-enabled actions in USA as over-the-air updates exceed 1,000,000

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Volvo has rolled out its latest over-the-air update, enabling owners of certain Volvo vehicles to issue voice commands via Google Assistant-enabled devices to enable them to warm up their cars from inside their homes and carry out other functionalities.

This is Volvo’s 11th large update and is estimated to reach 350,000 of the OEM’s cars internationally – the most cars that Volvo has covered in one deployment. It takes the number of updates delivered by the vehicle manufacturer to more than 1,000,000. The OTA updates now cover more than 68 markets.

“Thanks to over-the-air updates and our rapidly growing in-house software development, we can create and deploy new features as well as enhance the customer experience much quicker than before,” said Alwin Bakkenes, head of software engineering at Volvo.

Google Assistant-controlled actions delivered by the latest update mean that users in the US market will be able to check battery and fuel levels, start the climate control system or check on the charging status. The start or end of a charging session can also be activated via a simple ‘Hey Google’ command on a user’s device.

“The launch of Google Assistant-controlled actions is a demonstration of our commitment to providing our customers with a better car every day, adding more convenience and peace of mind,” added Bakkenes.

Currently, the functionality is only available in the USA for Volvo vehicles capable of receiving OTA updates. The OEM plans to expand the update to other markets soon, with other commands being added.

Volvo has also expanded its Care Key technology that enables drivers to limit the maximum speed of their cars, even more than the built-in limit. A button has also been added to the pairing devices menu to make it easier to remove a previously paired device. Furthermore, in a staggered rollout, customers will be able to see details of what is in the OTA update via the Volvo Cars app.

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After spending six years working as a mechanic for various motorsport and high-end performance car companies, Callum joined UKi Media & Events in February 2020 as an assistant editor. In this role he uses his vast practical knowledge and passion for automotive to produce informative news pieces for multiple vehicle-related sectors.

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