Volkswagen Group has confirmed the launch of a new artificial intelligence (AI) company designed to offer customers a new range of experiences and deepen industry partnerships.

Dubbed “AI Lab,” the new company will spearhead Volkswagen’s foray into machine learning as it catches up with other industry first-movers. Volkswagen disclosed that its latest entity will serve as an “incubator” for new product ideas before their full-scale rollout.

The company is already considering the development of a range of AI-related product ideas, including mobile infotainment systems, vehicle-to-infrastructure communication, predictive maintenance, and charging management.

There are plans to link external digital ecosystems with Volkswagen Group cars, hinting at the rollout of AI software capable of connectivity with roads, traffic lights, and other emerging technologies.

AI Lab is expected to push the frontiers to include speech recognition and other AI-backed services “going beyond their cars.” To identify promising projects, a Supervisory Board comprising top-ranking executives of brand groups—Volkswagen, Porsche, and Audi—will make key decisions.

“We want to offer our customers genuine added value with artificial intelligence. We aim to link external digital ecosystems with the vehicle, creating an even better product experience,” said Volkswagen Group CEO Oliver Blume.

AI Lab’s Board of Management names Carsten Helbing as CEO, while Carmen Schmidt will hold dual roles as CLO and CBO. Furthermore, the company’s rank and file for technical management functions will be bolstered by AI experts.

Besides pursuing internal development of AI products, Volkswagen’s new AI outfit is keen on forging partnerships with leading technology firms across Europe, North America, and China.

“Collaboration with technology companies is crucially important for us,” said Blume. “In future, we intend to simplify cooperation in organizational and cultural terms.”

AI sees integration across industries

Since OpenAI rolled out ChatGPT commercially in late 2022, generative AI has grown in leaps and bounds, with several companies integrating the technology into their offerings.

AI has found increasing utility in medical research, accentuated by Meta’s (NASDAQ: META) AI system to decode images by scanning brain activity. Social media platforms, including WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook, have introduced AI functionalities to improve customers’ experiences while governments are leaning on the technology for policy direction.

Despite the pace of innovation, AI is grappling with a slew of challenges, including copyright issues, the absence of clear regulations, and privacy and data handling concerns.

In order for artificial intelligence (AI) to work right within the law and thrive in the face of growing challenges, it needs to integrate an enterprise blockchain system that ensures data input quality and ownership—allowing it to keep data safe while also guaranteeing the immutability of data. Check out CoinGeek’s coverage on this emerging tech to learn more why Enterprise blockchain will be the backbone of AI.

Watch: What does blockchain and AI have in common? It’s data

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