Following Amazon Alexa, Jaguar Land Rover will release What3words update for 350,000 vehicles

Jaguar Land Rover said it will integrate geolocation program What3words into more than 350,000 existing vehicles to streamline in-vehicle navigation.

Only vehicles with the Pivi Pro infotainment system will be able to download the update, and all new vehicles with the system will include What3words. The Jaguar F-Type, which utilizes a different infotainment system, will be excluded.

The update, announced Thursday, follows the company’s February release of Amazon Alexa for nearly 200,000 of its vehicles. Unlike that rollout, What3words will not require an online pack subscription, said Frankie Cowan, public relations manager for What3words.

The navigation software had been previously implemented in a number of new Land Rover vehicles that were chosen “semi-randomly,” Cowan said. The software has been adopted by other brands such as Mercedes-Benz and Subaru, but Jaguar Land Rover will be the first to implement the system into vehicles already on the road.

What3words aims to streamline in-vehicle navigation by replacing street addresses with three words corresponding to the location’s coordinates. For example, 23 Park Avenue in New York City becomes “///sugar.laptop.sheep” in the system.

Jaguar Land Rover has said the application will make it easier for voice-activated devices to interpret destinations and minimize common issues with its vehicles’ current navigation programs.

“Voice entry of street addresses is riddled with error, as most systems have a hard time distinguishing numbers, street names and often only provide a list of most likely matches rather than a precise destination,” Jaguar Land Rover said in a statement.

“What3words enhances the speed and accuracy of car navigation systems by resolving issues like duplicate addresses, pins dropped in the middle of buildings, and un-addressed locations.”

The mobile version of the app has seen generally positive feedback on the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

The update will deploy via a software-over-the-air, or SOTA, method that JLR used for its Amazon Alexa update. The company’s longtime navigation partner, Here Technologies, will handle integration.

“The partnership with What3words, enabled by Here Technologies, further highlights our world-leading SOTA capability which allows us to offer services that are always on and always connected,” Mark Carter, navigation manager at Jaguar Land Rover, said in the statement.

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