Ford and Baidu signing a letter of intent for future collaboration. Present at the signing were (left to right) Ya-Qin Zhang, president of Baidu; Tan Su, general manager of Baidu’s internet of vehicles division; Robert Hou, director of mobility platforms and products, Ford Asia Pacific; Peter Fleet, Ford group vice president and president of Ford Asia Pacific. - Photo courtesy of Ford.

Ford and Baidu signing a letter of intent for future collaboration. Present at the signing were (left to right) Ya-Qin Zhang, president of Baidu; Tan Su, general manager of Baidu’s internet of vehicles division; Robert Hou, director of mobility platforms and products, Ford Asia Pacific; Peter Fleet, Ford group vice president and president of Ford Asia Pacific.

Photo courtesy of Ford.

Ford and Chinese Internet company Baidu are collaborating for the development of new mobility solutions, in-vehicle infotainment systems, and other digital services.

Ford China and Baidu will jointly explore cooperation across a variety of domains including connectivity and digital services, artificial intelligence, and digital marketing, Ford said in a release.

Ford and Baidu also seek to establish a joint connectivity lab to develop new cloud-based AI solutions to enrich in-vehicle user experience, Ford announced. The two companies will explore opportunities in cloud computing, such as integration with Transportation Mobility Cloud (TMC), the open cloud-based platform being developed by Autonomic, a subsidiary of Ford Smart Mobility, that provides transportation services such as vehicle connectivity for multiple players in the transportation ecosystem

Meanwhile, the aforementioned digital services they are developing are based on Baidu’s DuerOS conversational AI platform, according to Ford. The  DuerOS system includes features such as voice recognition, natural language understanding and image recognition in order to deliver a simple and personalized user experience for Ford vehicle owners in China. Its aim is to enable vehicle owners to command and communicate with their vehicles using natural language and easily access information and other services.

Robert Hou, director of mobility platforms and products, Ford Asia Pacific and Tan Su, general manager of Baidu’s internet of vehicles division, signed the strategic cooperation agreement on behalf of the two companies.

In July last year, Ford joined Baidu’s Apollo autonomous driving open platform as a founding member. The expanded relationship includes more areas of collaboration and lays the foundation for future growth and innovation for both companies.

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