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Vivaldi browser unveils app for Android, to feature first in Polestar cars

Vivaldi browser unveils app for Android, to feature first in Polestar cars
22 Dec, 2021

Vivaldi browser said it has announced its dedicated application for Google’s recently unveiled Android Automotive OS platform.  

With this roll out, Vivaldi claims to have become the first native browser app for the Android Automotive platform, and will start with featuring in the Polestar 2 -- a performance sedan from Volvo’s now-independent division. 

It is pertinent to mention here that the Android Automotive OS is different from Android Auto.  

Android Auto is an interface dedicated for in-car infotainment displays and works when an Android smartphone is tethered to the car’s system. It runs through the smartphone itself and does not work as a standalone service. 

Also read: Volvo rolls out trucks with Android Auto, improved telematics in India

Android Automotive OS was announced in October this year. It is Google’s open-source operating system for cars, which can work independently of tethered devices or smartphones.  

John Stephenson von Tetzchner, chief executive of Vivaldi, said, “Our technological and sustainability ambitions are well aligned. We value transparency, privacy, and responsible innovation – including the fact that we have our servers in Iceland, one of Polestar’s newest markets.” 

Like Google Mobile Services that power Android’s app ecosystem on smartphones, Android Automotive OS has Google Automotive Services (GAS) -- which will host its own environment of apps that car makers can make selectively available in their cars. 

Vivaldi said in a statement that its browser will offer a full set of features that will allow users to browse across multiple tabs, and stream videos through web pages.  

As safety checks, the browser will only be accessible when the car is static, and any video being streamed will turn audio-only when the car starts moving. 

Some other features that the Vivaldi browser on Android Automotive OS will come with include a built-in ad blocker, cookie tracking blocker, data sync across multiple platforms through a Vivaldi account, the ability to take notes and also a “privacy-friendly” translation service, the company added.