Automotive Grade Linux, or AGL, is a division within The Linux Foundation set on developing open-source software for cars that will help support the future of connected cars. The group is made up of more than 100 automakers, suppliers, and tech corporations. We sampled some of the iterations at this year's CES in Las Vegas. Toyota, one of the first two OEMs to join, announced today that a new AGL-backed infotainment system will go on sale later this summer in the 2018 Toyota Camry.
The new system will mark a huge step forward for Toyota and presumably Lexus, which has fallen far behind in the infotainment department. The Camry will be the first vehicle with the new AGL infotainment, but the system's flexibility will help provide an easy transition to other models, including those from Lexus. The big takeaway is improved connectivity and new functionality, though exact details haven't been revealed.
Because AGL is open source, Toyota will focus most of its effort on customizing and personalizing the system for its vehicles. That said, it should give us our first taste of a system that could find its way into products from Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Ford, and others. Because Toyota was one of the first to work on the project, it's had a heavy influence in AGL's development and direction. We'll get our first taste when we drive the Camry later this year.
AGL itself is the result of hundreds of engineers from various members working to build an open-source system. Think of it like Android for smartphones: a common base that various companies adapt and customize. Info gained from the Camry will be fed back to AGL and used to improve the system. The goal is to create a de facto industry standard. Curious parties can even download their own copy of AGL for free.