Company Showcase, AVE AutoMedia, Summer 2016 Cohort

It’s only a matter of time before autonomous (aka self-driving) cars become a common, and even ubiquitous, part of our lives. With drivers freed up from concentrating on the road, they’ll find themselves with significantly more time for productivity, catching up on tasks, and even just relaxing.

Looking into that future, AVE AutoMedia, one of three startups in our Summer 2016 cohort, works with media publishers and OEM’s (Original Equipment Manufacturers) to develop next generation media technology and apps for drivers and passengers.

Infotainment systems are catching up with consumer electronics and apps are now a part of the in-car experience.  These “connected cars” represent an opportunity for media companies and app developers – and AVE is addressing this opportunity with a platform for developing connected car apps.

The first application developed with the AVE Platform is Neptune, a video network for kids that works on tablets and compatible infotainment systems. For OEM’s, Neptune addresses the demand for tablet-based rear-seat entertainment and is one of the first applications designed for passengers.  Neptune will also be the first video application with connected car integration. (Most connected car apps today are for music, navigation, and weather.)  

Neptune is different from video networks like YouTube Kids because it focuses on STEM education with curated videos that are categorized into age-appropriate stations.  The app introduces kids to fun and educational content, while keeping parents involved by giving them remote control over what videos their kids are watching.  Parents have a dashboard within the app that allows them to set viewing limits and see what types of content their children are watching. And when Neptune is used with infotainment systems, parents will have control over content on multiple devices from the infotainment screen.  

Neptune also incorporates adventures that are destinations such as science centers, zoos, national parks, and libraries.  When adventures are selected, a video station is created to match the duration of the trip with content that is related to the destination.  Neptune allows for an uninterrupted viewing experience from the home to the car and back.  

In working with AVE during their six-month stay with us, Jaguar Land Rover was able to continue our advancements in maximizing and reinventing the driver and passenger experience, and the performance and efficiency with which those features can be delivered. In fact, Neptune was developed during AVE’s time in the JLR Incubator.

Since graduating the program in December 2016, the company has kept their extraordinary momentum and we couldn’t be more excited to see what they build next!

“Our team moved to Portland for the JLR Incubator because we wanted to gain access and insights about building a startup in the automotive ecosystem.  We wanted an intensive six months in Portland.  We got out of our daily routines and were able to focus on building our company.   The information that we received in the first few weeks was critical in validating and accelerating our product development.  We see the collaboration between established companies and startups as a great path to innovation.  Now we focus on building a great product that our customers will love!” Ryan McManus, CEO & Co-Founder, AVE”


Company Showcase: SICdrone, Spring 2016 Cohort

In order to shed a bit more light on what we’re doing here at the Jaguar Land Rover Tech Incubator – and who we’re doing it with – we will be shining a spotlight on one of our startups every few weeks.

Since Winter Cohort 2016 has ended and we’re headlong into Summer Cohort 2016, we decided to start right in the middle with SICdrone, one of the three companies making up our Spring Cohort 2016.

SICdrone – Spring Cohort 2016

Drones, drones, drones.

Amateur photographers and flight enthusiasts can’t seem to get enough of the latest products to hit the shelves, but drones have immense potential for uses beyond flying for hobby. From search and rescue to agriculture to transportation, drones could have a game-changing impact on a vast array of industries and social challenges.

Drones are long overdue for a drastic reboot, necessary to ensure their capabilities match their far-reaching possibilities. SICdrone is one startup that’s reimagining the design, performance, and reach of the multi-copter drone. Joining the Spring 2016 Cohort at the Incubator, the startup’s team of aerospace engineers, product developers, and engineers, is creating and manufacturing a series of hover-type drones that fly faster, farther, and with greater capability than anything like it on the market.

Jaguar Land Rover is interested in exploring potential use cases of drones in a vehicle context. We anticipate these machines could potentially provide our customers with more accurate real-time traffic information, expanded views of upcoming terrain, and a multitude of other potential applications that provide drivers with unique “birds-eye” insights.

We believe that SICdrone, with its innovative product design, is well-positioned to experiment in this space with us to create a better experience for our customers. We’re excited to work with them to explore their products’ potential for the automotive industry.

“Working in the Jaguar Land Rover Incubator has been great in the fact that it has really pushed us to explore more deeply the idea of pairing drones with ground-based vehicles. The partnership has opened up avenues that would have taken years and compressed the time-frame down to a few months. It’s been awesome to see the benefits drones can provide to off-road vehicle drivers performing scan-terrain-ahead type tasks and also for first responders.  For instance, we are looking into a drone that deploys from a fire chief’s vehicle with a camera sensor package that helps to keep firefighters safe by quickly scanning a burning building for hot spots prior to entry.” – Dan Bosch, CEO & Founder, SICdrone