QNX set to show off three connected cars at CES
BlackBerry Media | 83 Comments QNX set to show off three connected cars at CES The team from QNX is once again on the ground at CES, and this year they'll not only show off one car, but three. The trio of rides includes two technology concept cars and the QNX reference vehicle. A Mercedes CLA45 AMG will be outfitted with all kinds of QNX goodies including vehicle-to-...

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Apr 08, 2014 QNX and VisLab team up - Could we see a QNX car driving itself soon?


I'm far from an expert when it comes to how clever a car can be but today sees some sweet news for BlackBerry as QNX is officially adopted by VisLab at the university of Parma. 

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Mar 14, 2014 It might not run BBM but the new Neato BotVac is powered by QNX

I have to admit, this is probably the last thing I thought I would be writing about on a Friday but alas, we all know QNX powers a lot of stuff in this world so I suppose it comes as no real surprise. Neato Robotics, a robotics company located in Newark, California, has chosen the QNX Neutrino operating system as the software platform for the new Neato BotVac series of robot vacuums due to its superior realtime performance and efficient use of system hardware, as well as for its flexibility to support new product features.

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Mar 03, 2014 Apple now has CarPlay, why can't QNX do the same for all phones and all cars?

Apple now has CarPlay, why can't QNX do the same for all phones?

Today Apple made CarPlay official. Automobile makers who support the technology will essentially be implementing a way for drivers to interact with their iPhone through the car's infotainment system, which includes the car's touch screen, microphone, buttons, etc.

It's important to point out that the cars are not running iOS. Apple would probably never license iOS to anyone, so we're really just talking about something the equivalent of a control protocol and toolkit for rendering iOS app data on an external (car) display.

Why is this relevant to BlackBerry? Because it strikes me as obvious that no car manufacturer is going to ever agree to an exclusive deal where they can only support CarPlay, or Android Projected Mode, or whatever other automotive interaction platform exists.

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Feb 27, 2014 Ford hasn't decided on QNX for future Sync sytems just yet

Although there has been plenty of talk surrounding Ford and their possible ousting of Microsoft for QNX in their next-generation Sync systems, Fords managing director Pin van der Jagt has now stated the rumors are not entirely accurate, although Ford is looking towards other vendors for the system as part of normal business operations.

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Feb 25, 2014 QNX Brings Mobile-Class User Experience to Secure and Reliable Embedded Systems

Today QNX has introduced their latest generation QNX Neutrino OS. The QNX OS 6.6 is designed to bring new graphics, UI, security and more to developers and allows them to create all kinds of products for everything from industrial automation to in-flight entertainment. QNX OS 6.6 is tops for security, adding things like enhanced heap, stack, and memory layout protection to help thwart potential malware.

The QNX OS 6.6 also supports the new QNX SDK for Apps and Media, which allows developers to create UI's using HTML5, JavaScript and CSS.

QNX OS 6.6 and the QNX SDK for Apps and Media is scheduled for February 28th.

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Feb 24, 2014 QNX and Qualcomm Snapdragon Automotive Solutions to demo the QNX CAR Platform at MWC

Back during CES, QNX and Qualcomm announced the first In-car Infotainment system powered by Snapdragon Automotive Solutions and with that event over, it's onto Mobile World Congress where there will be a full on demo of the new Qualcomm Snapdragon Automotive Solutions/QNX CAR Platform happening. 

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Feb 22, 2014 Future Ford Sync units to be powered by BlackBerry's QNX, not Microsoft

Ford is reportedly ready to ditch Microsoft in favor of BlackBerry's QNX car platform in future upgrades of its in-car Sync system. Ford has had various issues with their MyFord and Sync systems over the last few years, bringing down their quality ratings and causing them to seek other options for their vehicle infotainment systems. They are said to be making the switch to the QNX platform for all of these systems in the very near future. 

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Feb 07, 2014 QNX powering the 2015 Audi TT user-programmable instrument cluster

While Adam was busy checking out the Mercedes CLA45 AMG at CES 2014, Audi was busy showing off their use of the QNX CAR Platform for Infotainment in the 2015 Audi TT by introducing the new user-programmable instrument cluster (FPK). The display is no longer a separate piece of equipment in the car, instead the whole instrument cluster itself is a display offering the driver everything they would need with the ability to customize it on the go.

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Feb 06, 2014 Vote for your favorite QNX CES Car of Fame

Leading up to CES 2014, the QNX blog started up a new series called 'CES Cars of Fame' that takes a look back at all the concept cars to come out of the QNX garage. In total, seven cars have been added to the CES Cars of Fame series and now with the two latest vehicles unveiled – the modified Mercedes CLA45 AMG along with the modified Kia Soul

QNX is asking for everyone to vote on their favorite concept car of all time. Is it the awesome Bentley Continental GT? Maybe the Porsche 911 Carrera? The poll is open until Friday, February 14 and they’ll announce the winner on Tuesday, February 18. Go have your say using the link below.

Vote for your favorite CES Car of Fame


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Jan 23, 2014 QNX Software Systems launches new Cloud business

On the Inside BlackBerry Blog today, CEO John Chen introduced QNX Software Systems' new Cloud business. The dedicated group will be a part of QNX and will "support the Internet of Things" — bringing solutions for embedded platforms, networks and devices as well as machine to device interaction. The group will work alongside the existing organizations that already serve the embedded market and will be dedicated to bringing the solutions to market in a timely and cohesive manner.

Alec Saunders has been named as the Vice President of the QNX Cloud business. Marty Mallick has now been appointed as Vice President, Global Alliances and Ecosystems which combines his current role with developer relations. 

Read the full post below.

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Jan 07, 2014 In the driver's seat with QNX at CES 2014

This year at CES the QNX team had no just one, but two new cars to show off. The Porsche and Bentley are back in the garage and replacing them is a Kia Soul and a sweet Mercedes CLA45 AMG. I had the pleasure of strapping into the drivers seat of both cars to check out all of the awesome tech QNX packed in this year.

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Dec 31, 2013 BlackBerry QNX versus iOS and Android in automobiles

This week the world of mobile computing turned its attention to the automobile industry because of fresh headlines that Google has signed a deal with Audi to power its in-car entertainment and information systems.

This isn’t a new topic, obviously. Last October I had a conversation with a hard working Bay Street analyst who told me he’d been talking to plenty of car manufacturers and many of them were looking at Android, not QNX.  We’ve also seen Apple working on in-car iOS deals with a huge list of car makers.

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Oct 08, 2013 QNX Software Systems Provides New Software-Based Engine Noise Reduction Technology for Automobiles

The QNX team again has a hand in some new car tech, this time for engine noise reduction in vehicles. The QNX Acoustics for Active Noise Control integrates with current vehicle infotainment systems and uses existing audio hardware. Rather than having a standalone unit, the system is able to reduce engine noise without added costs to both manufacturers and car buyers.

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Sep 12, 2013 Mercedes-Benz adds QNX infotainment system to new concept S-Class Coupé

Another awesome car is now sporting a hot QNX infotainment system. The Mercedes-Benz concept S-Class Coupe was revealed this week and it was just announced that packed inside is a sleek QNX-powered system. The two companies have been working together for years but the S-Class Coupe is the latest to show off just how far things have come.

Inside the 449 hp Biturbo V8 coupe sites a high-tech system complete with two 12.3 inch displays, a touchscreen with four world clocks, a stereo camera with a front 3D view, "6D vision" to detect objects in front of the car and a variety of other systems to monitor surrounding traffic. 

Check out the full press release below for all the details and then head here to check out more of the S-Class Coupe.

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Aug 28, 2013 QNX Automotive Technology to Power Garmin K2 Platform

It was announced today that QNX has been selected by Garmin to power the new Garmin K2 platform. The K2 platform is the next generation of vehicle infotainment solutions and will include capabilities such as multiple displays, voice recognition, smartphone integration, 4G connectivity and more. The systems will provide in-car access to navigation, streaming media and real time web information. The customizable K2 platform will be able to meet a large variety of OEM needs and costs. 

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Aug 13, 2013 QNX teams up with Panasonic to offer car infotainment systems worldwide

QNX has announced today that they have been chosen by Panasonic Automotive Systems Company of America to develop infotainment systems for automakers across the globe. The two companies will collaborate on in-vehicle systems for car makers in North America, Europe and Japan to enhance the next generation of infotainment systems and in-car applications.

The QNX Car Platform is already available in millions of vehicles and the new partnership will allow Panasonic to easily customize systems for various vehicles as needed.

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Aug 12, 2013 Vector 5: Tim Stevens and intelligent connected electric cars

Vector is Mobile Nation's newest show. It takes the most important topics in technology today, focuses on them from interesting angles, and then discusses the hell out of them. On this episode, Tim Stevens, star of auto and gadget blogs, joins Rene to talk about the computerization of cars, including launch controls, self-driving vehicles, Microsoft Sync, BlackBerry QNX, and iOS in the Car, and the explosive potential of hacking engines.

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Jun 05, 2013 QNX car platform expands to include Android applications

Showing off the goods at Telematics Detroit, QNX demonstrated a new version of their QNX car platform. The new version will allow developers to do even more as it now supports Android applications as well as those built with the Qt5 framework.

The platform already supported OpenGL ES and HTML, so the new additions make thing even better all around. Much like BlackBerry 10, the QNX software will run Android applications in a separate "sandbox" to protect the system from any unwanted content. 

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May 25, 2013 Should QNX just be called BlackBerry?

Is the QNX a good thing or should they just change it to BlackBerry?

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Apr 17, 2013 7digital and QNX team up to bring digital music to in-car infotainment systems

7digital and QNX have announced today that they have partnered up and will be bringing 7digital's catalog of over 23 million songs to the QNX car platform. BlackBerry has worked extensively with 7digital in the past, most recently integrating their digital music store with the BlackBerry World storefront. Now, any vehicles using QNX-powered devices will be able to integrate the entire digital music store directly into in-vehicle systems. The new partnership will allow for users to purchase digital music on the go, right from their dashboard in vehicles like Audi, BMW, Honda and Toyota. 

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Jan 29, 2013 History of QNX and its Implementation in BlackBerry 10

QNX Porsche

When BlackBerry 10 launches this week, it will mark a major transition in the underlying operating system that powers BlackBerry. From the moment that BlackBerry 10 hits the market, the operating system that powers devices will now be the QNX Neutrino Real Time Operating System (RTOS).


Most readers may not realize this, but this is actually Research In Motion's second major platform transition since the original BlackBerry products hit the market in 1999. The first devices were actually programmed in C++. They ran on a single AA battery cell, which lasted 3 weeks for the average user. They had a data modem that could move 8 kilobits per second. There were no third party apps.

By 2001, RIM launched its very first BlackBerry device that actually made phone calls too. This device, the BlackBerry 5810, had an operating system written entirely in Java 2 Micro Edition (J2ME). This allowed RIM to improve security by isolating the radio code from the application code. It was also much easier, at the time, to find programmers who knew Java, so it helped the ecosystem grow.

Founder of Research In Motion, Mike Lazaridis, is a brilliant man. He invented the BlackBerry and is largely responsible for its success. Yet he could be stubborn. I remember speaking to him at an informal gathering of financial analysts in Orlando a few years ago. For a minute or two, my conversation with him was uninterrupted. Other analysts were speaking to other executives. Smart technology folks were starting to make noise that RIM was running out of room to further advance the Java platform. I asked Lazaridis if they need to redo the BlackBerry OS. His reply was crystal clear. I'm paraphrasing, but his answer was pretty much, "Oh we'll never rewrite the OS. It would be too risky."

What he meant by this, I assume, was that BlackBeryOS had amassed industry leading security certification. Re-writing the OS would mean starting over and risking these certifications.


For many investors, developers and other RIM-watchers, it wasn't the first time the RIM founder said "never". Over the years we've been told that BlackBerry would never have a color screen, and would never include a camera. Ask anybody who has been following RIM since the early 2000s and you'll surely be provided with a longer list of things RIM would never do.

But in April of 2010, RIM announced the acquisition of QNX Systems. Mike Lazaridis had clearly changed his mind, but in order to keep things quiet, he wasn't talking about the company's next big OS transition yet. One week after RIM announced the QNX acquisition, I held a "fireside chat" style of interview with the BlackBerry founder in front of institutional investors. When I asked about QNX, he was very cool about it and said, "We see the car as the ultimate BlackBerry accessory". This was, of course, a reference to the fact that QNX has been embedded into the control systems of over 200 models of cars including high end names like Audi, Porsche and Jaguar.


While Lazaridis wasn't about to tell the world that Java was a thing of the past (that would only scare developers off), the acquisition of QNX gave RIM a way to build a brand new device running a brand new operating system.

That new device would be the BlackBerry PlayBook. According to many former RIM employees I've spoken to, Lazaridis always recognized that mobile computing would advance rapidly. He wanted to build a laptop or a tablet to enter this new market. Lazaridis understood this long before Apple launched the iPad. But the iPad is probably what gelled the idea of a tablet in Lazaridis' mind versus a netbook or laptop form factor. 

The man to make it happen was Dan Dodge, the founder of QNX Systems and the guy who wrote the Neutrino OS. Dodge, and University of Waterloo buddy, Gordon Bell, founded QNX back in the early 1980s. They released the first version of QNX in 1982. Little did they know they'd end up powering BlackBerry hardware 30 years later. At the time, QNX was built for embedded computing systems.

In 2000, almost 20 years after the first version of QNX hit the market, the QNX team had completely re-written the OS and launched Neutrino. As Dan Dodge describes it, "QNX is used in systems where the cost of failure is very high". The Neutrino operating system is used to control huge Cisco Internet routers, lighting and equipment for huge Las Vegas shows, slot machines, windmill turbines, and nuclear reactors, just to name a few markets.

The way Neutrino has been architected also makes it ideal for today's modern mobile computing platform, which is explained in more detail below.

The proving ground, inside of RIM, was the PlayBook. If you measure the PlayBook's financial contribution to RIM, it was a disaster. But if you look at the bigger picture, it accomplished an important goal. It proved that the QNX Neutrino OS could massively succeed in powering a mobile computer with all sorts of rich media applications and a highly responsive touch screen interface. QNX did it's job. The rest is up to application developers and user interface designers.


QNX was built as a super tiny OS. It has something called a Micro Kernel architecture. This differs from Unix, MacOS and Windows which have much larger, monolithic kernels. Even the older Java-based BlackBerry OS is a monolithic system.

Ultimately, a micro kernel design gives you an OS that is easier to maintain, more secure, and much more flexible.

If you've ever been a Windows user, you're familiar with the blue screen of death. You know what I mean, right? Your computer crashes, the screen turns blue, and some total incomprehensible message is displayed on your screen telling you about a fatal system error.

Huge monolithic kernels are more likely to run into these "blue screen of death" problems because various applications and processes all share the same memory. Let's say a third party app has a bug in it that overwrites memory allocated to another application, or a core part of the operating system. The entire system can come crashing down, and it would be very hard to figure out what's causing the problem.

The Neutrino micro kernel architecture avoids this problem by allocating virtual memory to each process. There are only two required elements in a QNX Neutrino system. The first is the micro kernel. The second is the process manager. Everything else runs as a process, and is managed by the process manager, and handed off to the micro kernal OS for execution. If a buggy application accidentally tries to write into memory that it doesn't control, the process manager will recognize it as an address not allocated to the app, and tell the kernel to shut down the problem on the spot. No blue screen of death.

That's why it is exceptionally rare to hear of PlayBook owners who complain that their device crashed, while BlackBerry handhelds can crash much more often. Individual applications can crash. But the core OS? Rarely.

Within QNX, everything runs as a process that plugs into the main OS. Things like TCP/IP or wireless communications are all processes. Drivers are all individual processes, as are each application running on the device.The keyboard, the gesture recognition, and the rendering of anything to the screen are all individual processes. If something goes wrong, in most cases, the kernel can reboot these processes without you, the user, even knowing that anything happened.

Metaphorically, you can see this on a PlayBook or BlackBerry 10 device. Every time a new application loads, you can see a new thumbnail (or active frame) open up, and the application lives within that frame. When the frame is out of view, the app is still running. It's just not rendering anything to the screen because the process in charge of rendering to the screen is being asked to render something else. In this way, the PlayBook OS and the BlackBerry 10 OS are true multitasking beasts.

When it comes to security and reliability, this micro kernel architecture with protected virtual memory is ideal. Rogue apps can't steal data they haven't been granted access to.

The Neutrino OS is also fully POSIX compliant. In case you are wondering what this means (and it's important), POSIX stands for Portable Operating System Interface for UniX. It's a set of standards that programmers adhere to when writing code. In other words, it's a bunch of API specifications. For QNX to be fully POSIX compliant means that it is very easy for Unix, Linux and even MacOS developers to write code for QNX.

QNX Neutrino is also ready to accommodate future demands. It was designed, up front, to run on multi-core processors. I'm not talking about 2 and 4 cores, either. I'm talking about 32, 64 or even more. And these processor cores can even be distributed geographically. In theory this means that one instance of the OS could run multiple devices, screens, and in multiple locations. I won't pretend to be smart enough to envision what this means for the future, but I think it's safe to say that QNX can do things that other operating systems, such as iOS or Windows Phone 8, were never designed to do.


The QNX Neutrino operating system is not the entirety of a BlackBerry 10 device. It's just the foundation. When Lazaridis brought Dan Dodge up on stage at DevCon 2010, he introduced QNX with a building metaphor. If you want to build a skyscraper, you don't build it on top of the foundation for a house. You have to properly engineer the skyscraper foundation to bear the immense load that will be placed upon it.

QNX is a skyscraper foundation. It's ready to handle whatever your throw at it. But just like any other computing environment, the quality of the core applications and user interface matter. After all, you don't ever inspect the foundation of a skyscraper. You just assume it's there, working.

In much the same way, QNX can be running perfectly well, and still result in a horrible experience if the core apps are ugly, non-responsive, lacking features, or crash due to buggy programming.

That's why a QNX-powered BlackBerry, at least in theory, should be exceptionally stable. But various processes, which are part of the BlackBerry system, need to be just as stable to deliver an incredible user experience. For example the current PlayBook OS implements the on-screen keyboard using Adobe Air. Sometimes it gets bogged down and doesn't respond. This has nothing to do with QNX and everything to do with the keyboard process being executed by the kernel. In BlackBerry 10, the keyboard has been completely re-written in native code. Any user of the Dev Alpha can attest to the fact that it's much more smooth and reliable than the PlayBook's keyboard.

Same goes for the browser. The PlayBook browser was a huge step forward from the BlackBerry OS. But it's far from perfect. Again, this isn't a reflection on QNX, but instead a reflection of the quality of the work done by the BlackBerry browser team responsible for building it. The BlackBerry 10 browser has been completely rebuilt, and should perform significantly better as a result.

Overall, QNX proved its worth as an underlying kernel on the PlayBook, but many other components of the Tablet OS were rushed to market. With the launch of BlackBerry 10, RIM has completely the core apps that make up BlackBerry using native code. This is why we're confident it's going to be an incredibly smooth customer experience.

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Jan 10, 2013 Dan Dodge shows off the QNX Bentley concept car at CES

QNX unveiled their latest concept car at CES this week and it was a big hit on the show floor. A Bentley GT is always an eye-catcher, but outfit it will crazy QNX goodies and it's even more over the top. The QNX Porsche was awesome, but this Bentley is ten a hundred times as awesome. Kevin took the driver's seat as Dan Dodge himself took him through all of the QNX features in the car ranging from the oversized touchscreen console right down to the digital dash cluster (which has the same core as the BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha). 

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Jan 08, 2013 QNX unveils new Bentley Continental GT concept car

QNX has been showing off their car platform technology in a Porsche 911 for a while now, but it seems that they wanted to step things up a bit a lot. As posted on the QNX blog today, their new concept car is a sparkling Bentley Continental GT. Sticking hard to the "go big or go home" attitude, QNX has gone all out this round. The new concept car features a huge center stack with full HD graphics, optical touch input technology and a physical control knob to be mounted directly on the screen. The screen supports full 3D naviagtion, media player and even as the car's virtual mechanic. 

The digital dash cluster is also customizable and features a tach, gas gauge, temperature gauge and much more. Of course you'll also find voice control, smartphone support and much more in this crazy tricked out car. I for one am excited to check this bad boy out in person (whenever that may be). Plenty more to come on this for sure, but for now head over to the QNX blog for more and keep reading for the full press release.

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Jan 07, 2013 Press Release: QNX Announces New In-Car Speech Recognition Framework to Understand a Speaker's Intent


The QNX car platform has has done some amazing things over the years and today adds another great feature to their already big arsenal. The new in-car speech recognition framework will now recognize a speakers intent for voice commands. The framework allows applications to access AT&T Watson which provides a more natural understanding of spoken commands. This means users can do things like create calendar appointments, dictate email, give voice navigation instructions or even perfom internet searches. Very cool stuff that adds to the already amazing QNX car platform. Check out the full press release below.

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Jan 04, 2013 QNX shows what the future may hold - Some very amazing stuff!

This video from QNX really shows us the potential power that they may well give cars in the future. Though the video is from November, the RIM owned company has once again got our juices flowing with this sneak peak into what they are likely working on. With QNX-based BlackBerry 10 launching later this month, I wouldn't be surprised if we see some sweet integration between phone and car in the years ahead. Who knows how much of what QNX are demonstrating may be close to release? Only time will tell but it looks exciting stuff.

CES is kicking off in Las Vegas in a few short days, and we should get a good look at the latest concept car from QNX as in the past. If you'll be attending CES next week, make sure you stop by the QNX booth (Booth 1837) and check them out! The Mobile Nations team will be at there as well, so stay tuned across our network for all the news.

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The QNX in cars theme is ok, but I would love to read more stories about QNX in other situations like power plants and space shuttles. I feel like I have a good sense of the car story.

Jesse Deslauriers

Old News I have already invented that 3 years ago. CHECK IT FREE app store Dragfx Real Time Muscle Car Engine Sound Simulator http://bigblockentertainment.yolasite.com