Yandex NV, Russia’s largest search engine, is expanding its services in the market for connected cars, an emerging battlefield for global technology firms, including Apple Inc. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google.
Yandex this month agreed with Toyota Motor Corp.’s local unit to install services including maps with real-time traffic information and internet browsers in some premium-model Camrys sold in Russia, said Andrey Strelkov, head of geolocation services at Yandex. Toyota confirmed the agreement. Yandex signed a similar deal with Honda Motor Co. last year.
“Cars are set to become the new generation of connected devices, and we are seeking to stake out claim to this market that should be worth billions of dollars in the future,” Strelkov said in a phone interview.
Automakers are seeking to develop connected cars that will eventually be the basis for self-driving vehicles. Some of them use service from Google or Apple, while German producers BMW AG, Audi AG and Daimler AG bought Nokia Oyj’s digital map unit last year.
Yandex also announced Wednesday it will provide maps, voice and computer-vision technology to Russian Daimler-backed truckmaker KamAZ PJSC.