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General Availability of BlackBerry IVY Opens a New Era in Software-Defined Vehicle Innovation

Like many historic business initiatives, this one started as a simple idea sketched on the back of a restaurant napkin. The location of the restaurant — Seattle — is only significant because of its proximity to the headquarters of another iconic global enterprise. That seed of an idea soon blossomed into a full-fledged partnership between two industry leaders, ultimately producing a platform that I believe will profoundly change the way we experience personal transportation.

That’s why I’m thrilled to announce the general availability (GA) of BlackBerry IVY®, BlackBerry’s cloud-connected automotive AI platform, co-developed with Amazon Web Services (AWS). This ground-breaking platform is designed to enable automakers to rapidly deploy innovative third-party applications that enhance the in-vehicle experience for drivers and passengers alike — without compromising safety, security, or consumer privacy.

For the past three years, BlackBerry and AWS worked relentlessly to build this game-changing new platform, which accelerates automakers’ software-defined vehicle (SDV) journeys, reduces their R&D complexities, and helps them achieve faster time-to-market for introducing exciting new experiences and services. 

“Our co-development work with BlackBerry represents a significant achievement in automotive software development, and will open the door to what’s possible in our new era of software-defined mobility when companies innovate together,” said Wendy Bauer, general manager for Automotive and Manufacturing at AWS.  “With the power of data, these customers will be able to unlock insights necessary to connect to their consumer, create the data-driven features to stand apart on the road, and further the industry on its evolutionary path.”

Faster Data-Driven Insights

Those of us who have labored together to meet this important milestone in IVY’s™ product roadmap share a common belief that automakers and software developers are in dire need of intuitive tools. Tools that quicken and simplify the development of new in-vehicle applications and connected services — without requiring deep domain experience in automotive-specific skills or safety requirements.  

It’s our vision that BlackBerry IVY will foster and unlock a diverse digital automotive ecosystem of partners and monetizable solutions on a global scale, similar to what happened in the mobile device space. The major impact we foresee is tremendous acceleration in the pace of innovation for new in-vehicle services, across multiple vehicle brands, makes, and models.

Of course, Rome wasn’t built in a day (and neither is a new car design) but our IVY general availability release represents a very big step. It’s worth reflecting on the journey that we’ve taken to get to this point. 

Since the initial announcement in December 2020, BlackBerry has launched several initiatives to develop a valuable ecosystem of partners and a myriad of new, exciting AI-powered solutions using the data insights of BlackBerry IVY.

Building a Rich Partner Ecosystem

In March 2021, we launched our BlackBerry IVY Innovation Fund to invest in start-ups that leverage BlackBerry IVY insights, with a view to expand the breadth and depth of our ecosystem with innovative transportation solutions for automakers. 

We’ve since closed investments with four disruptive start-ups, each with a compelling value proposition that promises to make life easier for drivers, and unlock monetization for automakers. Our initial partners are Car IQ for in-vehicle payments, Electra Vehicles for AI-driven battery management applications, Compredict for predictive analytics, and CerebrumX for data-driven insights on vehicle and driver performance. 

In addition to our IVY Innovation Fund portfolio companies, we’ve continued to seek out and meet with leading companies from across the transportation and mobility industries, helping to foster the growth of a wide selection of vertical-specific services and automotive applications leveraging BlackBerry IVY. 

I’m pleased to share that our outreach efforts have been well received, and our network of IVY-enabled partners has since blossomed into a rich ecosystem of third-party applications from nearly 30 businesses. That application ecosystem includes areas as diverse as electrification, e-commerce, safety and security, vehicle lifecycle and operations, and the in-cabin experience. 

The diversity of these solutions illustrates that the unique benefits of BlackBerry IVY can provide value across many parts of the transportation industry.

Taking IVY for a Test Drive

Providing a compelling platform and a vibrant ecosystem of turnkey solutions means nothing if the applications exist in a vacuum. And so, a big part of IVY’s journey to date has been getting out on the road, crisscrossing the globe, and meeting with customers and partners to showcase these development efforts, share our vision of IVY’s potential, and to better understand the key pain points automakers are looking to solve. 

At what has become ground zero for automotive innovation, we used the most recent CES® this past January to demonstrate several BlackBerry IVY-powered applications that were pre-integrated and deployed on commercial automotive platforms. These integrations were based on extensive customer input and included the following: 

  • Bosch’s information domain compute platform deployed within a Jeep Grand Cherokee, showing innovative AI-based solutions for predictive maintenance of brake and tire wear, powered by Compredict, as well as secure in-vehicle payments powered by CarIQ
  • PATEO’s intelligent digital cockpit, highlighting an EV battery management solution powered by Electra Vehicles, illustrating how IVY insights help power personalized solutions for battery range and driver profiling, alleviating “range anxiety” 
  • A virtualized BlackBerry IVY platform solution, powered by AWS Graviton processors, demonstrating how automakers can rapidly develop machine-learning-based automotive solutions for scene detection and cybersecurity use cases
  • In what was another major milestone for us — and an important validation for IVY’s attractiveness as a platform — we also announced that Dongfeng Motor, one of China’s largest automakers, selected a BlackBerry IVY-powered PATEO Digital Cockpit for the company’s next-generation, all-electric VOYAH H97 model. The selection followed successful completion of a proof of concept (POC) project, which you can learn more about in the video overview, below:
BlackBerry SVP Vito Giallorenzo discusses the BlackBerry IVY-powered PATEO Digital Cockpit that Dongfeng Motors selected for their next-generation, all-electric VOYAH H97 model.

The Road Ahead

Industry reception to BlackBerry IVY has been extremely encouraging, highlighted by multiple POC requests from high-volume automakers in North America, Europe, and Asia. Each of them, like Dongfeng a year earlier, wishes to put the platform through its paces to understand its capabilities and potential.   

In tandem with the significant interest we’re seeing from automakers, we’ve created several new roles to grow the BlackBerry IVY team. We’re looking for the world’s best and brightest to join us on our mission to simplify automotive software development and enable transformative automotive solutions — things that will literally drive our future. 

For those who want to “kick IVY’s tires” for themselves, and see how it can actualize their goals and fit into their future production programs, we have free software evaluation trials and development toolkits available by request. We also have several exciting events coming up where you can experience an IVY-powered vehicle first-hand and see it in action, such as AutoTech Detroit on June 7-8, where you can join us at Booth #507. 

We look forward to giving you a “peek under the hood” so you can see how BlackBerry IVY brings a new era of invention to enhance the in-vehicle experience.

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Vito Giallorenzo

About Vito Giallorenzo

Vito Giallorenzo is Senior Vice President and General Manager of BlackBerry IVY.