London CNN Business  — 

Like many carmakers, Toyota is trying to find new sources of revenue beyond making vehicles.

The company been branching out into robotics and now wants to push further into the growing market for homes that can connect with cars, appliances and services via the internet.

It is teaming up with Panasonic — an existing partner in batteries for electric vehicles — to build smart houses and cities.

The companies said Thursday they will form a joint venture early next year that will combine Toyota’s construction subsidiary Misawa Homes and its development unit Toyota Housing with Panasonic Homes.

Panasonic (PCRFF) and Toyota (TM) said that working together will boost their competitiveness in the Japanese housing market, where the country’s shrinking population is reducing demand for new homes.

While its parent company is best known as a carmaker, Toyota Housing has sold over 100,000 homes over nearly four decades.

Toyota and other global automakers have been investing heavily in new technologies that connect vehicles to road infrastructure and devices including household products via an internet connection.

The joint venture with Panasonic, which specializes in connected home appliances and batteries, could yield tech breakthroughs that would help Toyota compete against Tesla (TSLA), Google (GOOGL) and Uber.

Toyota has in recent years been on the hunt for tech opportunities: It’s making robots that assist with household jobs and health care, while venturing into the ride-sharing business.

Other car makers have been forming similar partnerships and strategic alliances. Volkswagen has struck a deal with Microsoft (MSFT) to develop an “Automotive Cloud” that will integrate apps into cars.

The Renault (RNLSY)-Nissan (NSANF) alliance and Fiat Chrysler (FCAU) have both partnered with Google, while Volvo (VOLAF) is working with Uber on autonomous vehicles.