Saab trademarks – IQon and eXWD

EduSaab has been keeping an eye on trademark developments and has noted two new Saab trademarks being registered in the last six months or so.


Apparatus for regulating and controlling electric functions of vehicles; on board vehicle electronic systems, namely interactive vehicle control system for integrating, managing and providing driver access to functions of vehicle navigation system; entertainment system; telephones; vehicle environmental information and control systems for heating and cooling systems in vehicles.

Swade’s read: Pronounced ‘icon’, this should be the system that controls various user systems in your car, as well as integrating your personal device (i.e. your phone) with your vehicle. Look for a lot more integratation and access from the Saab 9-3 replacement vehicle late in 2012.

OS? My bet is Android.



Reproduction of the mark where the mark is represented in standard characters.

Used on: Motor vehicles, namely, automobiles, sport utility vehicles, trucks, vans, engines therefor and structural parts thereof.

Swade’s read: Again, applicable to the Saab 9-3 replacement vehicle, eXWD will relate to the electronic rear drive system being developed by e-AAM, a system that will make its debut on the 9-3 replacement vehicle.

71 thoughts on “Saab trademarks – IQon and eXWD”

  1. Android comes to mind, although I can also imagine that a car maker like Saab will have Blackberry as their first choice. Android is a bit too young and geeky.

    • Just install an iPad, and your woes will be over.

      Or, just keep Saab’s/GM’s nav. operating system.

      Or, MYO.

      But please, no Android! Any adaptation of it should never be found in a car. Too many features, and in my opinion, Android was/is never ready for the public in the first place.
      It’s just too clunky, and with too many updates too often.

      I prefer iOS, but then again, that’s just me…

      If Saab does Android, then there will obviously be some sales lost to the Great OS War of 2010+.

      • Using both a HTC Hero/Desire and an iPhone, I must say to me the iOS can only be described as “just like Android, but much less intuitive”. I also started using Macs at work and I must say they crash on me like the worst PC I’ve ever had, and the Safari and Finder are probably both some of the worst applications of their kind I saw.

        • That’s interesting (to me at least). just ditched my Hero to get an Iphone – wouldnt go back for any amount of money. As Jake said above – the android/hero was clunky, slow and much less intuitive IMHO.

          • I’m an early adopter when it comes to iPhone. After several years under the iOS I changed to Nexus S Android and I’m very happy with that choice (iOS vs Android is a too long discussion to handle here). I’m delighted to hear the efforts made to integrate mobile devices with the car. We don’t want the same issue like when the 93ss got launched. That car should support mobile devices better according to the first press releases.

      • I am hoping for RIM’s (blackberry) QNX system. From what I have seen of the user interface for the Playbook this would be a sweet system in a car. Of note the QNX system has already been picked up in a number of vehicles in the coming year.

        Either way I hope Saab tweeks anything they go with to make it a unique high quality interface. I can’t wait until the end of the month to see if the new concept vehicle shows us a sneak peek at this interface

    • Likewise!

      Please let it be Android and don’t let Saab choose the wrong one and become the car world’s Betamax!

  2. The nice thing about Android is its adaptability for so many different applications: from washer machines to full-fledged computers. A simple, skinned version of Android is perfect. The framework already exists and improves with each firmware update. Also, no licensing fees are a plus for a company like Saab.

  3. If it’s Android, then the iCompany will be a little bit p****ed off, that they haven’t been the iFirst ones. πŸ˜‰

    But it should be Android, the cooperation with S-Ericsson is still ongoing.

    • Sony-Ericsson’s commitment to Android does not seem overwhelming. Their first Android device, the X10, did not even have full multi touch hardware, and was released March 2010 with an already outdated 1.6 version. It only received one update to an already outdated 2.1. There will be no more updates after half a year on the market!! Comparative example: Apple updated the original iPhone for three years.

  4. I have never driven a BMW or an Audi. When I bought my 2009 SAAB 9.3 XWD..I was looking at a 2009 BMW 328xi and 2009 Audi A4 quattro. How do these cars compare to my SAAB XWD? Just curious….

    • I bet you can go down on stats without a problem comparing measures, engines, hp, and so on for ages.

      Most importantly is what you like and your own perception of what a car should be like. From that point it is almost impossible to compare cars… πŸ˜‰

  5. Android is linux based and so an open source operating without the hideous constraints of Apple or the death throws of RIM.

    A variant of Android is a sensible choice to use as an in car system.

    ‘If Saab does Android, then there will obviously be some sales lost to the Great OS War of 2010+.’ Correct I’d never touch a vehicle with a factory installed Apple or RIM OS and as for Windows 7………

    If ever there was a car that should Linux it’s a Saab.

    • MeeGo could be a better option, but since Nokia is moving away to Windows Phone 7, the future of MeeGo is a little bit uncertain. πŸ™

    • This is not quite correct, iirc. Parts of MacOSX are also open source, under the project name of Darwin. Even the original user interface specification of NeXTStep was public domajn, and GNUStep is trying to reprogram these APIs. Otoh, part of Android is intellectual property of Google, the use of which Google may revoke any time they please, if I understood this correctly.

  6. I’d actually be shocked if they went with any major OS and expect them to more likely keep the system more closed, with a terminal mode. That’s what literally every other manufacturer is doing, and it keeps everyone happy. VW has been working on a very cool adaptation of iOS iPod out mode, where the phone takes over processing and the capacitive touchscreen of the car is able to VPN through the phone. I checked swabs current suppliers and try as well as vw, BMW, GM, and others are using this approach.

    So don’t get too worked up yet guys πŸ™‚ what I do hope however is that the screen is large enough and that it incorporates a fast enough chip to keep things snappy. The other nice thing isnthat we finally have real names for things, like eXWD instead of “the e-AAM electronic rear axle XWD system.”

    IQon. Hmm. Is English the only language that almost always makes q sound like “kwah?” I like the way it looks on paper though.

    • You’re right, some extension of the embedded system that no-one’s ever heard of and that they’ve been using up till now will probably be used.

    • I think it is only a matter of time.

      Mobile phones started out with proprietary locked systems. These days, any new mobile phone that you cannot play ‘Angry Birds’ on looks plain silly. Same with stand-alone mp3 players. Why buy a small device that can’t run your own software? It doesn’t cost much extra and makes the device infinitely more useful.

      All it takes is one company to make the switch… Apple did it to mobile phones. Would be nice if Saab had the guts to do this for the automobile industry.

  7. By 2012 projections for an Android device will be 1.5ghz Quad Core with 2gb of memory and 16gb storage with a screen size of your choice. It will be the latest tablet variant of Gingerbread (or another silly name), likely be version 5.0 at least with full system voice control, auto translate, Sat Nav and more apps than you’ll ever need.

    Imagine KITT with the option of Angry Birds.

    In the meantime if you want HUD in your older Saab and have Android just download this app and put your phone on the dashboard.

    • “It will be the latest tablet variant of Gingerbread (or another silly name)”

      It will certainly be a dessert and further down the alphabet …perhaps IceCream or Jelly or KingCone

  8. Think MyFordTouch/Lexus Enform for Saabs. It will work with Android just as well as an iPhone or Windows phone. iPod functionality is a given.

    Finally curing the biggest lapse in Saab’s interior technology.

  9. Saab + Apple. As an Apple nut I love the idea but I actually would prefer some Linux based system which was, after all, invented by a Scandinavian. πŸ™‚

    Sent from my iPad

    • As a fanboy, I want Saab to implement iOS like nothing else. But something tells me that it would be so pricey, that it would drive the company out of business to do so.

      So, happy thoughts, but not realistic ones, unfortunately.

      • I’m not a fan of iStuff since I like to choose for my self. But this discusson of what kind of OS the futute saabs will have is nothing I will have a say on. As long as I can use my stuff, I happy.
        (Sent on my Andriod πŸ™‚ )

  10. In patent speak, an apparatus can be pretty much anything. Also the present navigation system is an apparatus. Also, it says “for controlling…telephones”. I see no indication whatsoever that such apparatus would be based on a popular phone OS. From the description, there would not even neccessarily be a monitor.

    To me, this sounds more like a new user interface design, maybe some new input device.

    Aside from this, QNX may be an option, as it is a long time player in the field of microcontroller programming, stable and realtime. And small footprint. But again, that has nothing to do with RIM’s decision to also use it.

    • Well, chances are that Saab already uses QNX, as it has been used in over 200 automotive applications, according to Wikipedia.

  11. Meego is open, and has builds specifically for cars, backed up by Genivi group with members like BMW, Renault, GM etc. Look it up, it’s promising.

    I’ve never seen an Android-build for cars, and please Saab, don’t go the Microsoft way as Ford…

    • Car makers best keep quiet about the origin(s) of the underlying technology in their computer systems. As the discussion above proves, people associate themselves strongly with it, while there’s no such thing as -for example- Dunlop or Michelin fanboys (at least not in the same numbers and with the same fanaticism or consequences).

    • All the special Linux builds for embedded systems, tablets, cell phones, etc. have all been very short lived. The main reason is always that support just ceases to exist after 1 or 2 years. Sometimes this is because the developers just loose interest. They have been doing this for fun, as soon as it start looking like real work they quickly bail out. Even when supported by a big company support can just seize because the companies priorities shift. Nokia has basically dropped support for Maemo and has moved to Windows Portable 7.
      Does this mean that something like Windows Portable is better since it is supported by Microsoft? Far from it, Windows in general is just the lousiest piece of software that was even written. It’s a hotch potch of legacy routines, ‘borrowed’ stuff and layer upon layer of patches to make up for all the bugs and security holes hidden underneath. Did you ever wonder why you keep on buying faster hardware with more storage while the response times have stayed the same over the last 15 years?

      I’m all for open software and have been using Linux for 20 years already. However, I’m not so sure if I would like to have it for something like ‘mission critical’ applications. If it would get used for a human interface in a car then I hope that the cars critical software gets properly shielded from whatever fun stuff the Linux system is residing over. I’m really paranoid and, for instance, someone being able to remote start his/her car with a cellphone makes my skin crawl. It’s unavoidable that this system gets hacked, just imagine what this could do when you’re happily cruising on the highway.

      • Btw, I drive my cars to get away from a computer screen. Wtf does my driving fun have to be spoiled by a big, clunky screen in the middle of the console?

        • GerritN, it is there so you can spend two minutes to set up your favorite playlists, and then leave all the discjockey duties to the onboard computer from then on. That way you can focus on the driving rather than change CDs or tune the radio.

          Or at least that is what it is supposed to do. (The 9-5’s satnav system requires too much hands-on interaction when playing tunes — but with a few minor tweaks it could have been brilliant)

      • I’m really paranoid and, for instance, someone being able to remote start his/her car with a cellphone makes my skin crawl. It’s unavoidable that this system gets hacked, just imagine what this could do when you’re happily cruising on the highway.

        Hi GerritN,
        I thought I was the only one having those fears.

        • Red, You’re definitely not alone. Read my previous comments about stuff like the automatic braking systems. What if all this goes haywire and you don’t even have a manual key to turn off the main computer in case of emergency? It’s hard to disconnect your battery on the move.
          I’d really like to see car manufacturers adopt the ignition/power switch from sports cars with all these chips driving the car nowadays. A Boeing or Airbus doing 900 km/h at 30.000 feet is not that easily hacked by some kid with a wireless scanner.

    • My vote goes to Meego as well. If you go to, you can download their In-Vehicle beta. Load it on a USB drive (instructions provided) and try it out.

      Obviously, it will work better if your laptop has a touch screen, and bluetooth/gps won’t work without suitable hardware.

      Meego runs a standard Linux kernel, and it’s not tied to a single supplier telling you what you can or can not run, so it’s miles ahead of the other options that way.

      I would be very surprised if Saab did not keep the In-Vehicle electronics segregated from the core functionality (ECU, ABS, ESP, etc). That’s what they do now.

  12. Based on what I’ve heard from Saab people, Android is a pretty safe bet. Then I’m guessing at a Saab-branded AppStore, in order to keep pace with the consumer electronics development. iOS? Nah. Windows? Not for a european car with premium ambitions. QNX? Maybe, since it’s Audi’s and BMW’s OS of choice.

  13. I work in ICT industry for 15 years now and this new operating systems are in my opinion the way to go! Android is currently the fastest growing and far best platform to develop for and if I were in charge of developers at SAAB I would chose it as a basic platform.


    • I hope they take security as seriously as they say.

      But it looks interesting, and Saab should be an interesting test platform for them. πŸ˜‰

  14. I don’t see the indication for Android/iOS here to be honest, I rather think of something “i-drive” like. (The famous BMW joystick-ish controller). However, cooperation with Apple would be great marketing and I really don’t see why people would turn the 2012 “93” down because it has some Android-based user interface! We’ll have to wait’n see. Maybe the Geneva concept car will demonstrate the iQon technology!

    • Nooooooooo! No damn iButtonBetweenTheSeats stuff. I want buttons, buttons with labels, buttons with label and one singel function.

      And if there is an adjustments to be done I want dials!

  15. Well it’s definitely not just something in the line of idrive! The explanation of the patent is more suited to Fords “Sync” system if anything. I know it’s wishful thinking with Saab and Apple but the two companies draw so many comparisons with their products.

  16. Android is by far det best choise for a saab control/infotainment system. Why?

    1. It’s cheap. It’s actually free. And due to the fact that the OS structure and subsequent API’s are already developed it takes very little development from SAAB to make a custom system.
    2. It is very customizable. You have support for all relevant standards so implementation of other devices (ie. your phone or media device) is easy. Also the upgrade structure if your in-car system will change. The navigationsystem provider will be able to constantly update your maps.
    3. 3rd party developers. So you are above average interested in traffic statistics. Good for you then that I made you a program which displays live statistics about the area you are in. So you happen to be on a roadtrip with a good friend, you slowly make him understand why you like the car this much. But the nail in the coffin is probably when you get a pop-up informing you of a SAAB track-day happening close by. You drive over and tells your friend you wouldn’t mind a bit more power for this occasion. Good then that you with a few buttons purchase a limited license for a maptun stage2 ecu upgrade. The cost is charged to your card and the Bluetooth enabled maptuner loads the new software.

    iOS. 1. Cheap? You can’t buy it. Apple won’t release the development of their software out of house. 2. If Apple agreed to develop it they would also be the only ones who can develop updates and changes. You would have problems integrating some devices like any music device but the iPod. 3. 3rd party development. Yes.

    Blackberry. 1. Cheap? Not at all, if you even get the opportunity it would take huge development costs to transform it into something suitable. 2. No. 3. No.

    Android would prove to be the chespest, most user-friendly and long-sighted choice. By miles!

    • Your argument for Android is fine but you aren’t very familiar with RIM and their products. They bought QNX ( ) a couple years ago. QNX specializes in software for airplanes, military vehicles ect… and have already been adopted in other vehicles.

      So their would be no development cost to develop this to suit Saab. It would be purchased and ready to go. Check out the Blackberry Playbook for a taste of the possibilities. Also RIM has already released that their new QNX based software will be able to install any Android app. So you get a secure system with all the benefits of Android’s large # of apps.

      • Why not? I really don’t care what’s behind the scenes. As long as the interface and functions are nice and functional and supports a broad variety of devices. But we really don’t know at this stage what the patent is for. We can speculate and we do, en masse! πŸ™‚

  17. Completely disagree, iOS should be the choice. The system is proprietary to Apple and gets a logical and long term development. Obviously it is state of the art and Apple is by far the most innovative technology company since decennies. No doubt, that this will continue if Steve Jobs should have to leave the stewardship.

  18. I bet Saab drivers and Apple users are the same demographic group. Independent people, with interest in technology, design and style.
    The natural choice, Saab on different markets hand out iPads to people signing up for or buying Saabs. Downloadable stuff for iPhone and iPad.
    – –
    Just hope Saab finally will move the screen up from the floor. My professional advice is taking it up 15-20 cm.

    • That does not sound rational to me, Charles.

      The existing solutions are poor, compared to the possibilities that exists. Any change at this point will be an improvement. So whatever solution is chosen in the future will no doubt improve on whatever it is you have in your current Saab product.

      But I concur with simon’s comment above. Apple’s OS is not found on non-Apple hardware. I do not think you need to worry any time soon.

      • I know it won’t happen. But I will not be sucked into the blackhole that is Apple’s ecosystem. Apple hardware is some of the best, but for the most part I can’t stand their software, be it the dumbed down iOS or the clunky bloated iTunes.

        • I can see how this would work.

          First, you wouldn’t be able to activate your new Saab without associating it with an Itunes account and giving away full access to your credit card.
          Next, Apple willl have access to your GPS data (as well as anything you listen to or look at) and reserves the right to monetize this data.
          Not much later, a security update for Quicktime forces you to download two gigabytes of additional software. How about a car version of Imovie? It doesn’t matter what’s in the software, because your car is now so slow as to be unusable.
          Any non-approved modifications to the cars will be tried to the full extent of the law.
          The touchscreen scratches immediately, and crack when you drive over a pothole.
          You will not receive any radio stations if you hold the steering wheel the “wrong” way.
          Flash and USB are not supported. End of discussion. Fanboys try to explain that HTML5 will replace Flash, but that won’t happen before…
          The entire system stops working after eighteen months for some arbitrary reason (the countdown timer on the non-replaceable battery expired). Fixing it will cost more than the cost of a new car, so you throw the old one in the trash and start over.

  19. I was thinking of a lengthy argument on vehicle related OS platforms, but I think it is meaningless.
    At the end of the day, I just hope Saab has enough expertise to pick and develop what they think is best for – Saab and their customers. While I was “sucked into the blackhole that is Apple’s eco system” a few years ago, I finally have found something that works. Having tinkered with both Linux and Windows, the tinkering was a hobby and very time consuming, fixing the problem was a challenge. With my Mac stuff, I actually get a lot more productive work done and no tinkering. Maybe I’ve grown to old for tinkering.
    But, again, that does not matter for Saab’s iQon. I think it is great news, showing they are planning for the future, hopefully the end results will be; robust, feature rich, adaptable, updateable, and most importantly – user friendly!
    Saab Up! (whatever platform for the vehicle OS)

  20. iOS is not an open format. Saab could easily be refused iOS usage.

    The electric AWD is really important. FWD fuel economy with the ability to get through snowdrifts. It is a perfect solution for the snow belt. Mechanical AWD is too wasteful and does not interest me.

      • I’m not sure if you have an angle to your question. Anyway, I live in Minnesota right now. Yesterday it snowed over a foot. I am working from home today (for example), but driving on the streets would be a major challenge at the moment. My Saab is in its parking space, waiting for plows. The traction control system for the 9-3 is really good. Industry-best in my opinion. ESP as well. But AWD would help.

  21. It’s really amazing how much emotion was stirred up here. But in the end, given the trends in IT, I think the following can be said:

    -complex built-in systems are obsolete the day they come out
    -there are personal preferences and ideological constraints to using a specific OS, and Saab should avoid getting into this.

    I still think that instead of present day navigation solutions, Saab should concentrate on
    -providing a good radio
    -providing interfaces for populat handheld devices, including not only power supply, but also data transmission for things like speed, OBD data, and the internal car configuration. Either Saab or third party developers could then use this interface for their own apps. A standardized hardware interface/mount would allow for the development of phone/tablet specific holders.

    As a NeXTStep/MacOSX/iOS user since 1994, my opinon on chances for iOS in a built-in car computer: forget it. Apple is not in the market for automotive supplies, Steve Jobs is not known as a car guy, and he drives a Mercedes. Until this very day, integrating an iPhone into a car is a daunting task (not that this would be any better with Android, but still).

    • It’s really amazing how much emotion was stirred up here.

      This was a picnic. I usually have to shut down comments when Apple vs Anything is mentioned on site.

      Thanks to all for your self-discipline πŸ™‚

Comments are closed.

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.