Dirac and BlackBerry QNX collaborate to enhance in-car audio

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A partnership between Sweden-based digital audio company Dirac and BlackBerry QNX will see Dirac’s Opteo Professional solution integrated into the QNX Acoustics Management Platform to make it easier and more cost effective for OEMs to digitally upgrade sound systems within their high-end vehicle models. The companies have already started work on implementing the solution into a premium EV for a well-known European vehicle manufacturer.

With a shared commitment to supporting software-defined vehicles that can offer subscription-based upgrades via over-the-air (OTA) software updates, the collaboration will enable OEMs to optimize sound experiences across entire vehicle ranges.

“High-quality audio can be challenging for auto makers to perfect across entire line-ups, but, with the new Dirac-enabled QNX audio framework, manufacturers can quickly and easily upgrade any vehicle’s sound system with enhanced performance,” said Lars Carlsson, vice president and head of business development automotive audio, Dirac.

“This presents auto makers with an opportunity to capitalize on consumer demand for high-quality audio, while providing them with software-defined vehicles that offer added capabilities through subscriptions and other upgrades. Partnering with BlackBerry QNX is a win-win for auto makers and their customers alike, and we look for-ward to expanding the collaboration to continue to push the bounds of automotive audio.”

Dirac Opteo Professional will be accessible on all QNX supported chipsets through the QNX audio framework, negating the need for OEMs to install costly audio software in head unit SoCs or in separate digital signal processors – a process which is often time intensive.

Starting with Dirac Opteo Professional, the duo will expand their offering to include Dirac Opteo Premium and Dirac Opteo Performance for mid- and entry-level vehicle sound systems respectively. The expansion will also include the Dirac Virtuo solution which envelops drivers and passengers in high-quality immersive sound.

Dirac audio solutions will be a standard feature for OEMs, in addition to being offered as a potential upgrade for consumers at the point of purchase or at a later date via OTA update-based purchases.

“Collaborating with Dirac equips our industry-leading QNX Acoustics Management Platform with improved audio performance that ensures faithful reproduction of any content – while also offering manufacturers an entirely new revenue opportunity,” said Brad Hamme, principal solution architect, acoustics, BlackBerry QNX. “Our goal is to make premium audio available to more drivers in more vehicles, and we are excited for the ongoing expansion of this partnership to address all classes of automobiles.”

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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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