Software In Cars – The Engine Behind An Enhanced Driving Experience

In producing its cars of the future, the German automobile manufacturer BMW taps into the software know-how of Gofore’s subsidiary eMundo for high-level automated application performance testing and verification. The results point the way for integration and validation of new software architectures in vehicles, for example, by use of existing Android platforms.


How to maximise output and quality in increasingly complex vehicle software development

The car of tomorrow will be clearly defined by software. The integration of Android-based technologies, known to users from the consumer electronics field, has already made a breakthrough in the automotive world. Mobile infotainment applications in the vehicle can be used to control both in-car functions like radio and hands-free systems as well as out-of-car functions like navigation.

To ensure optimal performance of the display in the cockpit, including smartphone compatibility, continuous testing of vehicle functions and the provision of related back-end services are necessary. The large number of features available these days, however, makes it almost impossible to carry out the required quality assurance measures manually, particularly since the parameters for each test differ from application to application.
For this reason, BMW needed to bring in a higher degree of test automation to its internal development, together with compatible software-aided processes and technologies.

The automotive sector places new demands on its tools. In the future, cars ought to respond to traffic without human input, and thus more and more auto components are controlled or integrated digitally. For a traditionally hardware-driven industry this means setting course towards an ever more software-defined development, while considering technical environments and leveraging already existing consumer platforms, such as e.g., Android.


Equipping teams with an agile and experimental mindset

Agile, iterative approaches characterise the development process of Gofore’s subsidiary eMundo. They are designed to help BMW realise their product visions with the aim to introduce sound vehicle functions within short time-to-market cycles. Thereby, many of the new tools arise through prototyping and experimentation. Ready-made solutions are rare.

In developing products, especially the design thinking method is paying off. It consists of several phases: observing, understanding, evaluating, experimenting, prototyping, and collecting user feedback.

Ultimately, it is above all proactivity and open discussions that contribute to the attainment of service goals. There is no one-size-fits-all development process. The approach – whether unconventional and retrospective or according to textbook – is determined by the problem at hand and the people who make up the team.

“With eMundo communication truly happens at eye level. Brought to you are highly skilled software developers, combined with honest feedback and fast exchange.”

Stefan Finkenzeller, Project Manager, BMW Group

the result

An automated test environment and shortened time-to-market cycles

At BMW, eMundo’s software expertise has led to process-assisted and automated tests. Reports regarding maturity levels are generated and processed so that the BMW test team knows exactly in what development stage a feature is at, at what point in time, and whether development is happening according to schedule.

Speedier innovation and greater precision are only a few of the many advantages this solution brings about. By gaining clear insight into various aspects of development activities, BMW’s test teams can visualise the development status of different features and decide on development priorities. This increases the quality of application development on the one hand. On the other hand, feedback cycles shorten.

For end customers, this means a more robust, low-fault app landscape in their BMW with faster updates, enabled through tested and fault-tolerant software platforms.

Case in numbers

  • 30 project team size
  • 9 different capabilities
  • 7 project duration in years
  • 1200 users per tool

About the Partnership

Powerful test environments for the future-proof car

The project work between BMW and Gofore’s subsidiary eMundo began in 2017 with the development of organisational tools. Today, the partnership centres on the provision of test infrastructures for apps, underlying platforms, and the integration of those into the vehicle. Beyond that, simulations are carried out for specific test infrastructures as well.

Through their software expertise, eMundis support BMW in its transformation towards a digital, software-based mobility provider. The transition to software-defined vehicles, in turn, enables new revenue streams. Gofore’s subsidiary eMundo thus plays a central role in the design of future-proof vehicles, fit for the ”Smart City“ concept, in which transportation infrastructure and means of transport will be increasingly interconnected.


The skills & competences utilised in the project

  • R&D
  • Software development
  • Embedded development
  • Test automation
  • Simulation / Virtual testing
  • Design thinking
  • Scrum / Kanban
  • Product vision board
  • Android (architecture platforms & apps) / software ecosystems
  • Agile roadmaps
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