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Alibaba Ties Up With Audi, Renault And Honda For AI-powered Tmall Genie Auto Smart Speakers

Shanthi Rexaline

On the sidelines of the CES Asia in Shanghai, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (NYSE:BABA) announced a partnership with a few automakers to install its smart speaker in some of their internet cars in China.

Diversifying Amid Maturing Core Business

Alibaba seems to be following in the footsteps of Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) in diversifying its business interests. Only recently, the company confirmed an investment in a Russian joint venture.

The Chinese company has struck a partnership with Audi AG (OTC:AUDVF), RENAULT S A/ADR (OTC:RNLSY) and Honda Motor Co Ltd (NYSE:HMC) to integrate its Tmall Genie Auto, an Artificial Intelligence solution developed by its A.I. Labs, into specific-model vehicles.

Why It's Important

This integration will allow the three automakers access to a variety of voice-controlled information and services such as identifying nearby attractions and restaurants, booking movie tickets, ordering to-go boxes, checking the status of package deliveries, reading children's books and ordering items on Alibaba's retail platform.

The smart speaker-controlled smart devices at home can also be controlled from cars, performing tasks such as turning on the heater and air conditioning at home.

Tmall Genie is the best-selling smart speaker in China, capable of controlling more than 100 million devices from over 600 smart appliance brands.

Following the launch of Tmall Genie Auto solution in April, the company has partnered with BAYERISCHE MOTO/S ADR (OTC:BMWYY) and VOLVO AB/ADR (OTC: VLVLY).

Alibaba shares were up 1.7 percent to $162.58.

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