Toyota, Lexus Vehicles Have AI-Powered Offline Voice Assistant

Toyota and Google have announced a partnership that will see automakers use the tech company’s latest AI-based speech service features. More importantly, the feature will be available on the next-generation Toyota and Lexus infotainment systems, regardless of their internet connection – even without an internet connection.

The latest Toyota and Lexus infotainment systems are based on Linux and already use technology from Google Cloud. Its voice assistant feature uses Google Cloud’s Speech-to-Text service to accurately perform automated voice recognition for in-vehicle queries. It was jointly developed between Toyota Motor North America Connected Technologies and the Toyota Connected organization since 2018.

Toyota, Lexus AI-Drive Speech Service
Toyota, Lexus AI-Drive Speech Service

The latest partnership aims to scale this up by using an AI-based system that no longer requires an internet connection.

Traditionally, the interaction of voice and speech assistants has relied heavily on the strength of an internet connection because natural language processing is very complex and can require specialized computers.

“By working with Toyota to understand the requirements and capabilities of in-vehicle devices, we are able to deliver server-like quality while using only a fraction of the processing power to ensure the best possible experience for drivers,” said Umesh Vemuri VP, Global Strategic Customer & Industry, Google. Clouds.

With Google Cloud’s new Speech On-Device feature, embedded devices will get the same AI-powered speech recognition and synthesis available in the cloud, regardless of internet connectivity. More importantly, it will be available soon for Toyota and Lexus vehicles without waiting for the next Toyota infotainment update coming in 2025.

Specifically, offline AI-powered voice assistants will be available in Toyota model year 2023 vehicles, including the Tundra, Sequoia, and Corolla families. Likewise, Lexus 2023 vehicles will get the same, especially the all-electric NX, RX, and RZ.

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