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AGL Member Spotlight: RealVNC

By May 26, 2017July 12th, 2019Blog, Member Spotlight

The AGL community is comprised of a diverse set of member companies that are collaborating on enabling the next generation of in-vehicle software systems. This blog series highlights AGL members and how they are contributing to open source software solutions that will benefit the entire automotive industry.  

Name: Tom Blackie

Title: Vice President of Automotive and Mobile

Company: RealVNC

Can you tell me a little bit about RealVNC?
RealVNC® is the global provider of VNC® remote access technology.  Our software is used by hundreds of millions of people worldwide, and in over 1 billion devices in every sector of industry, government and education. Founded by the original inventors of Virtual Network Computing (VNC), RealVNC is the only organization able to offer a commercial license to embed VNC in third-party products and offerings. Our automotive division, VNC Automotive™, works closely with our customers and partners as part of an extensive automotive ecosystem to seamlessly integrate VNC remote access and control, to connect phones to vehicles and vehicles to the Cloud.

Why is your company investing in open source?
We are advocates of open standards, having published our core technology, the VNC protocol, as an open Internet Standard, RFC 6143, back in 2007. VNC is also a core component of the MirrorLink® standard and is used widely in many 3rd party VNC viewers and servers.  RealVNC is also a Charter member of the Car Connectivity Consortium supporting the MirrorLink® specification, which uses VNC.

We have seen an increase in demand for open source software platforms like Automotive Grade Linux because of the quality, reliability and performance they provide, in addition to the cost savings. We believe this trend will continue to develop as open source evolves and starts to address even more critical functions.

How do you plan to use or support the AGL Unified Code Base?
We recently added AGL as one of our reference platforms and started using the AGL Unified Code Base for testing. Some of our customers are adopting AGL for next generation IVI systems, and we have ported our VNC Automotive solution to AGL so that it will be readily available for use. We will be demonstrating all the features next week during Automotive Linux Summit Tokyo 2017.

What do you think sets AGL apart from other industry alliances?
While many industry alliances are working on specifications and standardization, AGL is focused on creating a single, open source platform.  We believe that having a single platform can simplify the overall production process.

How do you anticipate AGL changing the automotive technology landscape?
We have seen an increase in Linux-based platforms being adopted across the automotive industry in recent years, and we believe that AGL will drastically accelerate this adoption and unify the ecosystem around a single platform. With AGL continuously adding, testing and updating the features on more hardware platforms, it will decrease overall development time and cost, resulting more production projects adopting AGL platform.

What advice would you give to someone considering joining AGL?
Get involved and learn more about the project. AGL is a “code first” organization with the goal of reducing fragmentation with a “one-stop” platform. The ecosystem is growing fast, and you can easily take advantage and benefit from the knowledge, experience and expertise contributed by members to quickly jump on new projects.