ACCESS Europe

ACCESS Twine™ for Car

Content Service and Software Solution for Connected Car Infotainment

Delivering an entertainment solution to cars is about more than technology alone. Automotive OEMs need a content portfolio to deliver to their customers and navigating this new frontier is challenging, especially as cars are sold worldwide and not to a single market like traditional TV platforms.

ACCESS Twine™ for Car (Twine4Car) is a white label solution to enable automotive OEMs to provide their customers with entertainment services to the infotainment head unit, rear-seat entertainment and customer devices (“BYOD”). It is designed to bridge the gap between the automotive and the content industries and increases the safety, the comfort, and the flexibility of content consumption for drivers and passengers. Therefore, ACCESS is the single point of contact for the OEM and will also engage with the OEM’s Tier-1 suppliers to enable the integration and provisioning of state-of-the-art content and streaming services.

ACCESS Twine™ for Car supports automotive OEMs in creating profitable and successful multi-device systems and media services, exploring new business models and engaging with drivers and passengers in new ways through entertainment services, starting now but being ready for all levels of autonomous driving. It connects the in-car infotainment system components seamlessly with mobile devices and enables a multi-device user experience far beyond common streaming applications or screen mirroring technologies. As a white label solution, ACCESS Twine™ for Car fully supports the OEM’s brand experience across all devices.

Feature highlights & advantages

ACCESS Twine™ Car

Content

ACCESS Twine™ for Car is more than just a technology; it provides a multimedia content service aimed at supporting, reinforcing and enhancing the automotive OEM’s brand experience. Starting with audio & video linear content (such as live TV and Internet radio), catch-up content and on-demand content (“VOD”), ACCESS and its partners are working worldwide with respect to regional and cultural requirements; enhanced with appropriate references to the applicable EPG information and metadata. The content portfolio, coming from broadcasters and studios, will be continuously optimized based on anonymized usage data.

Content rights owners will mandate that any OEM service includes end-to-end protection of their assets. ACCESS Twine™ for Car supports Digital Rights Management (DRM) and ACCESS collaborates with the DRM providers to ensure that OEMs can offer the content that they desire. ACCESS software components support DRM integration within the car’s built-in devices and brought-in devices for secure playback.

ACCESS Twine™ for Car tailors the content and its recommendations to the automotive environment. For example, taking the duration of the drive into account and offering titles that can be watched in full, or emphasizing content for which the audio track is useful even without video so that the driver can enjoy without the distraction of a moving picture. Furthermore, OEMs can offer tailored content for different vehicle types and brands so as to target the appropriate customer demographics.

ACCESS Twine™ for Car is not limited to audio and video content; it allows the OEM to offer much more, e.g. HTML5 online games, eBooks, Mangas, Podcasts, eMagazines/ePapers, audio books, etc. The appropriate content mix for an OEM or sub-brand will change over time and ACCESS will be there to advise and help the OEM explore how they can deliver the best service to their customers.

Technology

ACCESS Twine™ for Car works on mobile Internet connectivity and is therefore independent from changes in broadcasting infrastructures. By using adaptive streaming, the minimum bandwidth requirement for video content is below a 4G/LTE connection that is already common worldwide. As the upcoming technologies focus on even higher bandwidths’ availability, this approach can be considered by the OEM as future proof. To fully enable the connectivity within the car it is best practice to set up an in-car-WiFi-hotspot that provides the gateway to the mobile connection.
ACCESS Twine™ for Car features a modular in-vehicle product suite leveraging UPnP technology, extended with significant extra functionality and cloud based components. Flexibility to run on popular cloud infrastructure providers or in the backend of the OEM has been designed in from inception. Of course, the HMI design will follow the guidelines of the OEM, as ACCESS Twine™ for Car is a white label solution, and can be implemented by ACCESS or the OEM as part of the deployment project.

ACCESS Twine™ for Car allows OEMs to take care of different target groups across multiple brands of one OEM by managing the scope of the service, the number of screens and the way of integration of devices based on the same technology.

ACCESS Twine™ for Car enables the OEM to integrate the car’s built-in devices (e.g. head unit, additional units, rear-seat-entertainment) with brought-in devices like smart phones or tablets. Media playback on registered devices can be controlled safely from the head unit while connected to car’s WiFi. Additionally, for the many times a driver is alone in the car, ACCESS Twine™ for Car has no need to wait for upcoming levels of autonomous driving; the head unit ensures that only the audio track is available during driving and as soon as the car stops the video is resumed. Furthermore, ACCESS Twine™ for Car also supports content categories that need only the audio track to provide the relevant information.

In order to increase the convenience for in-car content consumption, ACCESS Twine™ for Car offers many additional features: transferring playback from one registered device to another, even with DRM protection; remote control of playback of one device from another; viewing playback status on another devices; content aggregation; parental controls; content privacy flags; universal search across all content a user is entitled to. Furthermore, ACCESS Twine™ for Car allows to push the control HMI temporarily to another device, e.g. to support chauffeur services, etc.
As well as the DRM protected premium content from our content service, ACCESS Twine™ for Car can also offer publicly available unprotected content available from online sources. Personal content is fully supported, e.g. via file system such as USB drive or SD-card, or stored on a mobile device. Every user can decide if their content is aggregated in a central index for searches and listings for all users in the car when their device is connected to the car Wi-Fi.
ACCESS Twine™ for Car respects the privacy of the users’ data. Personalized data will be only used when absolutely necessary, for example payment and billing. In order to provide useful recommendations, ACCESS Twine™ for Car allows the main user to add sub-users and register multiple devices. The OEM can control how many users and devices may be registered. Usage data can be logged to provide improved recommendations, but only used for such recommendations. The OEM HMI can offer the end user the choice of whether to activate this or not, as per the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Finally, anonymized usage data will be logged only to continuously optimize the content portfolio in general.

The cloud components of ACCESS Twine™ for Car can be installed on the OEM’s backend infrastructure and integrated with the services it provides. Hence, the OEM is always in control of the communication to the car. This integration includes, but is not limited to: the authentication of the main user, the abstraction of the integration layer of the different external services for content, metadata, payment, streaming, etc.

Benefits for OEMs and Tier 1s

ACCESS Twine™ for Car provides a white label content streaming service and a modular suite of components for the next-generation of In-Vehicle-Infotainment solutions for the automotive industry.  Automotive OEMs benefit from being able to fully brand the media services they launch and can manage the HMI to build a brand experience for their customers. The continuously optimized Content Portfolio is tailored to the automotive use cases and while providing a global offering, it still takes regional and cultural requirements into account.

The modular suite of ACCESS Twine™ for Car software components provide a seamless extension of car infotainment to Bring-Your-Own-Devices (BYOD) running iOS or Android, enabling seamless in-vehicle use of tablets and mobile phones. Centrally controlled by the head unit, it supports user and device management and media-redistribution on all connected devices. All while preserving the end-to-end protection of DRM security solutions. The cloud components of ACCESS Twine™ for Car can be configured for an OEM and run in the cloud or integrated within the OEM’s backend for full control on the communication to the vehicle. The modular white label software components provide an easy to integrate solution which considerably shortens the time to market and enables the OEM and Tier-1s to add and update services during the lifetime of the vehicle.

Data privacy is in sync with current privacy regulations, so that personalized data will be used only when absolutely necessary, for services such as payment and billing.  Furthermore, the OEM HMI can be designed to request end-user opt-in to use recommendations for themselves and potential sub-users that might have been added to the account. Here the collection of usage data will only be used for the recommendations themselves. Finally, in order to continuously optimize the content portfolio anonymized usage data will be used, ensuring protection of the end-users’ data privacy.
ACCESS Twine™ for Car supports multiple ways for the OEM to enhance the user experience. Examples include aggregating content across all registered devices connected to the in-vehicle Wi-Fi, providing aggregated search across all available content with indexing permission granted, support for place-shifting content to all those devices and by allowing multiple concurrent streams (multi-zone support) of content playback. In addition, ACCESS Twine™ for Car enables the OEM HMI to provide their customers seamless access to public content from the Internet, private content that the user – and others in the vehicle that have granted permission - has on personal devices or removable storage, and DRM protected premium content. ACCESS Twine™ for Car is based on open standards for media re-distribution and enables implementation of DRM technologies that provide the latest levels of content security demanded by content owners. The end-to-end protection of the DRM stays intact, even when place-shifting premium content.

ACCESS, as experts for connected media and multiscreen components, has over 20 years of experience in the automotive and media consumer electronics industries, making us ideally placed to bridge the gap between the media industry and the automotive market. This experience will enable OEMs to launch the entertainment services their customers are asking for, maintaining brand engagement by offering a truly multi-device experience compared to mobile device screen sharing solutions.

With offices worldwide, ACCESS can provide global coverage and multi-language support for OEMs and Tier 1s. ACCESS is also committed to providing support services for the duration of time expected by the automotive industry. Software Quality Assurances processes are applied company wide across all product portfolios.

Multi-zone support with ACCESS Twine™ for Car
Multi-zone support with ACCESS Twine™ for Car

Typical use cases

Linear / Live TV & on-demand premium & public content playback on Head Unit

  • Adaptive streaming support
  • Local Playback on Head Unit
  • Supports DRM protected & unprotected content
  • Playback control: Play, Pause, Resume, Stop, etc.
  • Control HMI / UI with content owners’ brands shop-in-shop system option

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) integration

  • Applications for BYODs
  • Google Android and Apple iOS devices supported
  • Full functionality of ACCESS Twine™ for Car on BYODs

Secure BYOD device and user registration to Head Unit

  • QR code displayed on Head Unit when new device is to be registered
  • OEM branded BYOD app uses QR code for registration to vehicle

Automatic discovery of connected registered devices

  • Seamless integration of BYODs connected to in-car Wi-Fi network
  • Communication between BYOD and built-in devices such as head unit

Supports additional in-car units

  • Supplementary screens within the car
  • Rear-Seat-Entertainment units (RSE)

“Push” content to BYODs and/or to additional units/RSE

  • Remote Playback control from head unit
  • Local BYOD/RSE playback controls, e.g. Play, Pause, Resume, Stop
  • Remote Head Unit control from BYOD and/or additional units/RSE, e.g. Play, Pause, Resume, Stop, Status-check,
  • Supports DRM protected & unprotected content
  • Adaptive streaming support

True Multi-Zone playback support

  • Individual devices can play different media content played back on all devices
  • Streaming only limited by bandwidth of Internet connection and in-car WiFi

Content Aggregation of all reachable registered devices

  • Content stored on all discovered device can be automatically indexed
  • Users give permission for their content to be indexed and shared within the car
  • Indexes are stored in the main unit and in the cloud, available to all devices in the car
  • Universal Search on the whole index

Parental control of content

  • OEM HMI can be implemented to set an age per sub-user
  • Content metadata used to ensure inappropriately rated content not listed and not played back on devices with this user being logged on
  • Content can be manually flagged as private and therefore not listed for others

Place-Shifting of content

  • Immediately pass content from one screen to another
  • Content plays immediately on receiving screen
  • No dangerous “handover” of physical devices within the car
  • Support of rulesets per device (e.g. not allowing head unit as destination without user confirmation)
  • Available for any kind of content, including DRM protected premium content

Control-Shifting

  • Head Unit can temporarily shift control to other device and revoke it later
  • For family use cases, e.g. another member of the family decides on the next watched content
  • For driver services, e.g. Taxi services
  • Automatic return of control to Head Unit when other device lost connection to car’s WiFi

Remote Media Access to in-home content

  • Secure access to content stored on devices within the home
  • Seamlessly amends the content index available to the car and accessible from the OEM HMI within the car
  • Home gateway extended with ACCESS Twine™ for Car components

Content Brokerage

  • Optional cloud service feature
  • Tackles issue of content incompatible with requesting device
  • Cross provider content index search for alternative encoding to be used for playback

Further options to come…

ACCESS Twine Car overview

ACCESS Twine™ Car overview

ACCESS Twine 4 Car – Infrastructure
ACCESS Twine 4 Car – Infrastructure

White label streaming service:

  • Global streaming service for the automotive industry
  • Software components for head units, RSE and BYOD
  • Content portfolio tailored to automotive use cases
  • Portfolio tailored to regional and cultural requirements
  • Continuously optimized and extended
  • Linear TV, Catch-Up and Video on-demand
  • Linear radio, on-demand music, etc.
  • eBooks, eMagazines, Mangas, etc.
  • online HTML5 games, etc.
  • and many more on request…

Device based components:

  • ACCESS Twine™ for Car Server
  • ACCESS Twine™ for Car Clients

Examples of supported OSes:

  • Embedded Linux®, Android™, Apple® iOS™

Cloud based components:

  • ACCESS Twine™ for Car Management Service
  • ACCESS Twine™ for Car Content Service
  • ACCESS Twine™ for Car Data Service

Separate & Complementary Modules (Add-Ons):

  • Digital Rights Management
  • Remote Media Access
  • Cloud Content Metadata search & management
  • Additional modules on request

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