Fuse isn't the only connected-car product on the market, but it has several unique features that set it apart from the rest. This post outlines some of those important distinctions.
Fuse, our new Kickstarter project, is different from other connected-car products already on the market.
First, Fuse is based on a gizmo that is always connected. The Fuse device has its own integrated cellular modem and a built-in GPS. This means that the car is constantly communicating with your personal cloud whether you and your phone are in the car or not. The GPS is using car power rather than the phone's battery, so it can be powerful.
Second, Fuse is connected to a powerful, personal cloud system that has been in development for six years. Our goal is to integrate your car data with the rest of your life—something that's only fully possible in a personal cloud. See my recent post on Facebook for My Stuff for more details.
Third, our architecture and policies make it clear that you own and control your data. We subscribe to the Respect Trust Framework.
Fourth, we have an API that's been tested by years of products and applications by hundreds of developers. We have experience managing developer platforms and APIs. As a result third-party developers can build applications that make use of the data from your car.
Our vision and our platform extend well beyond giving you a second dashboard for the car. As you can see on Kickstarter page, we are envisioning use cases wherein the data from the car is used in context with other things you care about: your contacts, your calendar, other Web APIs, your house, anything really.
For example, Fuse, combined with data from a connected home power meter could send an alert if your cars aren't home but something's using too much energy. We want to connect everything together.
A connected car that's connected through the phone misses out in several respects. This strategy makes your car's connectedness dependent on your phone. It puts everything in a silo created by the phone. The cloud is an appendage to the device. Sharing vehicles between multiple drivers becomes tedious in this world. Transferring data about the car and it's maintenance history to a new owner is difficult.
I want all my cars connected all the time. I want to know where they are whether I'm in them or not. When my daughter is out late and there's a problem with the car, I want an alert. When my mom's car needs an oil change, I want a calendar appointment from my mechanic. With Fuse those and other scenarios are easy.
We need your help to make Fuse a reality. Please take a minute and go pledge your support for Fuse at Kickstarter.