Red Hat and General Motors collaborate to help advance software-defined vehicles at the edge

Yesterday, at the Red Hat Summit 2022, open source solutions provider Red Hat and General Motors (GM) announced a partnership to help advance software-defined vehicles at the edge.

The two companies plan to expand an ecosystem of innovation around the Red Hat In-Vehicle Operating System. It provides a functional-safety certified Linux operating system Foundation, meant for the ongoing evolution of GM’s Ultifi software platform, GM’s end-to-end vehicle software platform.

Red Hat said that this collaboration is a significant moment in the convergence of the transportation and technology industries, with Red Hat’s cloud-native, enterprise-grade open source operating system accelerating the development of GM’s software-defined vehicle programs following Ultifi’s initial launch. This partnership will allow both companies to offer customers more valuable features responsibly, in a fraction of the typical development time.

“By collaborating with GM on the Red Hat In-Vehicle Operating System, we intend to bring the era of open source to the automotive world, benefiting automakers, ecosystem partners and consumers,” said Francis Chow, vice president and general manager, In-Vehicle Operating System and Edge, Red Hat.

In-vehicle software systems can require high levels of cybersecurity protection and stringent certifications due to critical safety priorities. In current systems, these requirements often lengthen the development process, making vehicle software updates difficult, since each update requires recertification.

The companies are looking to implement continuous functional-safety certification into the Ultifi platform, with Red Hat In-Vehicle Operating System pioneering the continuous certification approach announced last year.

The integrated software supports a variety of in-vehicle safety- and non-safety-related applications, such as infotainment and advanced driver assistance systems.

With the integration of the Red Hat In-Vehicle Operating System into the Ultifi platform, GM and Red Hat are aiming for:

  • Reduced costs from consolidation and reuse of software across a common platform
  • Improved development cycle for faster time-to-market with new customer features and software upgrades
  • A continuous functional safety certification for systems related to safety applications
  • Implementation and creation of new services, business models and revenue streams

Red Hat will contribute to the phased rollout of Ultifi, which will enable a frequent and more seamless delivery of software-defined features, apps and services to customers over-the-air. It is expected to launch in 2023.

“General Motors is now a platform company, and working with Red Hat is a critical element in advancing our Ultifi software development. Incorporating the company’s expertise in open source solutions and enterprise networks will pay dividends as we aim to provide the most developer-friendly software platform in the industry,” said Scott Miller, vice president, software defined vehicle and operating system, General Motors, in a statement. “With Red Hat’s operating system as a core enabler of Ultifi’s capabilities, the opportunity for innovation becomes limitless.”

Miller also spoke about the launch of the partnership during the Summit keynote, noting that this collaboration is the enabling factor for a whole new level of creativity.

“It [the collaboration] enables many more automotive functions that can be developed using the Linux platform,” he said. “And it’s a standardized framework, so it will set the direction for the entire industry and we really want that… The entire industry will benefit from the ability to bring new third party talent in the open source community to automotive development.”

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Samira Balsara
Samira Balsara
Samira is a writer for IT World Canada. She is currently pursuing a journalism degree at Toronto Metropolitan University (formally known as Ryerson) and hopes to become a news anchor or write journalistic profiles. You can email her at sbalsara@itwc.ca

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