Ford today announced that it will open a new research lab in Silicon Valley, just outside of the San Francisco Bay Area. The facility, scheduled to open early this year, will not duplicate or replace work by Ford’s global Research and Innovation teams, but will “develop and discover new technologies, trends, partners and collaborative research projects.”
“Silicon Valley represents a deep and dynamic technology neighborhood and is far from Dearborn,” said K. Venkatesh Prasad, senior technical leader for open innovation with Ford Research and Innovation. “With so many opportunities and so much potential, our new lab will allow us to scout new technologies and partners in their own environment and continue our expansion beyond the traditional automaker mindset to drive innovation for a better mobility experience.”
The lab, says Ford, will create an “innovation network” for Ford’s Design Studio in Irvine, California, with connectivity platform partner Microsoft Corp. in Redmond, Wash. Prasad also mentioned something about “seamless connectivity, cloud computing and clean technology,” but details on what that even means will be announced next week by Ford CEO, Alan Mulally, at the Consumer Electronics Show.
So Dearborn’s best will soon be wining and dining with the brightest in Silicon Valley, which sounds pretty great. Nothing against Microsoft, but we’d rather see Ford upgrade MyFord Touch with technology from those guys who created Siri for Apple’s iPhone…