Apple has inked a deal with the Indian-based car rental service Ola to integrate Apple Music service as a part of its in-car experience, reports Los Angeles Times. The service will be known as Ola Play and this will allow the travellers to control the music played during their ride. Besides the music, Ola Play will also allow the customer to control air-conditioning inside the car, along with free services such as reading e-books or watching videos from the in-car tablet.
The details and scope of the Apple’s deal with Ola are not clear. According to the report, the service will be available only in “some of its vehicle”, hinting that not all Ola cabs will have Ola Play service. Also, the deal could be such that Apple is offering Apple Music service at a discounted rate to the Ola cars.
"Cars were initially built for the driver. But with ride-sharing, the control needs to be there for the passenger, and Ola Play works along that,” Ola Chief Executive Bhavish Agarwal has reportedly commented to a media outlet YourStory. A similar partnership was seen between Uber and Spotify. In the deal, Uber passengers were given control of the car’s music through the Spotify app on their smartphone. Ola Play seems to offer much more than this service.
Initially, Apple was trying to enter car manufacturing business. The company had a “Project Titan” focusing on electric cars, where the company had allotted a 1000-people car team. The project focused on the development of a self-driving autonomous car platform. Established in 2014, the project had a target release date in 2020. Later, media outlets such as Bloomberg and New York Times claimed that the Cupertino-based company discarded the project and laid off dozens of employees.
Experts in the industry predict more moves from Apple to enter the automotive industry in one way or the other, a similar sample seen in its present partnership with Ola.