Google is teaming up with car manufacturers including Audi, Honda and Hyundai to integrate its Android operating system into their dashboards.
It would allow the apps and music on Android smartphones and tablets to work better with onboard car systems.
Rival Apple has already signed similar deals with BMW, GM and Honda.
Google announced that, along with GM and Nvidia, it would form the Open Automotive Alliance to “speed up innovation” in the car industry.
Millions of people already bring phones and tablets into their cars, but it’s not yet a driving-optimised experience. Wouldn’t it be great if you could bring your favourite apps and music with you and use them safely with your car’s built-in controls and in-dash display?
The car was fast becoming the next battleground for technology firms, everyone is pilling into this market. People spend a lot of time their cars and Google wants people to use its services wherever they are.
Google already has its eyes set on drivers. As well as developing a self-drive car, it has also added a traffic layer to Google Maps, sourced from other Android users, to inform users about traffic jams and other road issues.
Last summer the search giant acquired crowd-sourced traffic app Waze.
There is also an increasing focus on in car entertainment, how to get Spotify and other services into your car. Other apps have started to launch, such as systems that sent diagnostic information directly to garages to allow mechanics to prepare for car services. In addition there are also systems now available that allow users to remotely lock or unlock vehicles or even turn on the air conditioning before you get in the car.