Toyota’s Flutter-based in-vehicle user experience
While Flutter 2 allows developers to create attractive apps for mobile, web, desktop, and even upcoming form factors, Flutter’s versatility doesn’t stop there. Flutter is adding support for embedded devices in order to be a truly portable platform that can go wherever your users are. Toyota recently announced that Flutter will fuel the future of its vehicle entertainment systems, bringing a best-in-class digital experience to one of the world’s leading automakers.
Daniel Hall, Chief Engineer of Toyota Motor North America, discussed the cooperation and why Flutter was chosen.
- Toyota consumers demand a high-performance in-vehicle user experience that matches Toyota’s overall excellence. Flutter’s rendering engine performs well in confined environments, and capabilities like AOT compilation offer Toyota with the consistency it seeks in in-vehicle technologies.
- Toyota can now deliver an in-vehicle user experience that is comparable to what customers have grown to expect from their smartphones thanks to Flutter. Flutter’s cross-platform mechanics, which Toyota claims have bundled touch mechanics that just feel correct no matter where they run, enable Toyota avoid the slow performance and bad user experience that many embedded systems suffer from.
- Flutter’s developer experience also convinced Toyota. Despite the fact that Toyota’s applications are being released on a single platform, the ability to hot-reload on the desktop and distribute to iOS and Android tablets has proven useful for physical and digital user testing. These shorter iteration cycles allow Toyota to receive and incorporate client input earlier and more frequently, allowing them to provide the greatest possible experience.
- Toyota employs Flutter’s Embedder API in its automotive-grade Linux-powered infotainment systems to take use of the technology. By cross-compiling the engine and wrapping it in an embedder, the Flutter engine’s design makes it simple to embed in their target environment. Toyota can link Flutter apps with in-vehicle systems via the Embedder API, which is simple to use.
- Toyota has produced many in-house tools that expand Flutter’s developer ergonomics to incorporate Toyota’s design process, leveraging Dart’s language design and the Flutter SDK software architecture. Toyota wants to create a methodology that allows design tools to generate code that can be used to execute and validate software right away. Flutter’s approach to declarative UI and code as configuration, for example, allows Toyota to generate code quickly based on designs without the need for complex or confusing intermediary tiers.
- Flutter’s open-source ideals and burgeoning developer community have been vital to Toyota’s success when building these Toyota-specific technologies. Toyota feels it would not have been able to adapt Flutter to allow its in-vehicle use cases without the help of the big and open ecosystem.
- Working with open-source software is a good investment in Toyota’s in-vehicle user experiences, and the company looks forward to contributing to the open-source Flutter community.