The three-year-old firm will begin production of the M-Byte at its Chinese manufacturing facility in the middle of 2020, with the first cars going on sale in China before the end of the year. The company will then begin delivering the M-Byte in the US and Europe in 2021 and beyond. Byton has the capacity to build up to 300,000 vehicles per year and has currently 60,000 pre-orders to fulfill.
Expected to be a key rival of Tesla, Byton wants to be seen as a technology firm as much as a car manufacturer. To that end, the M-Byte'a biggest talking point - it's huge 48-inch dashboard display - will have been homologated for legal road use. So too has a touchscreen display fitted to the car's steering wheel, a first of any vehicle.
Byton has previously shown off how the displays will work, and how drivers and passengers are logged into the vehicle via facial recognition cameras. But for CES 2020 the company expanded on this, demonstrating how the user interface can be customized however the driver wants, showing local weather forecasts, stock prices, or photos of their family.
To help build on what software Byton itself has made for the display, the company today launched a software development kit (SDK), which developers can use to create applications specifically for the Byton display and operating system. Byton used its CES press conference to show how integration with Garmin means drivers and passengers can view movement and sleep data collected by their wearable device on the car's display.
Perhaps more useful in the real world is a partnership between Byton and CBS, who will create an app for watching TV and movies on the screen - but only while parked, of course. With this, and Tesla's inclusion of Netflix and YouTube apps to watch while parked and/or charging, it looks like the car dashboard is about to become a key battleground for entertainment companies through the 2020s.
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