TOKYO -- Toyota Motor Corp. will turn to a little-known company instead of Apple Inc. or Google Inc. to provide navigation and phone connectivity, as it seeks to maintain control of the car features.
The 2016 Tacoma pickup will be the first of several Toyota models to use Scout GPS Link from Telenav Inc. The company allows Android and iPhone users to pull up directions and traffic information on their phone or Toyota dashboard while giving the carmaker more say over how to configure the system.
"This is a solution over which Toyota has full control," said Niall Berkery, Telenav's director of automotive business development. "The big aspect for Toyota was the driver-distraction element and making it a safe experience. A lot of customers are using mobile nav in the car today, but many are doing it in an unsafe manner, whipping out the phone and typing while driving."
Toyota has been the biggest holdout among global automakers as Apple and Google turn dashboards into screens that closely mirror their smartphones.