MWC 17 : The Connected Car + Augmented Reality is here !!


Browsing around the GSMA Connected Living pavilion is always inspiring because it is what mobile will do for our future.The Connected Car section exhibits exciting developments in the auto / mobile industries partnerships. After all we love our cars and spend so much of our life commuting.For the neophytes a Connected Car is a car equipped with on board localization and communication technologies,internet access, and usually also with a wireless local area network.This allows the car to share internet access to other devices both inside as outside the vehicle and to interact with other vehicles and infrastructures.

Examples of Connected Car technologies are: In-vehicle navigation system with GPS and TMC for providing up-to-date traffic information, Adaptive cruise control (ACC), Lane departure warning system,Lane change assistance system, Collision avoidance system (Precrash system),Intelligent speed adaptation or intelligent speed advice (ISA) system, Night Vision system, Adaptive light control system, Automatic parking system,Traffic sign recognition system,Blind spot detection system, Driver drowsiness detection system,Vehicular communication systems,Electric vehicle warning sounds used in hybrids and plug-in electric vehicles, etc.

The opportunity for the Connected Car market is huge, both in terms of revenue and benefits, such as customer loyalty.The global connected car market will be worth €39 billion in 2018 up from €13 billion in 2012, according to new market forecasts.The market is close to the tipping point where connectivity in cars will become a mass market.As 4G LTE networks reach people , virtually every auto manufacturer is working toward a connected car that takes advantage of next-gen data speeds, from voice-controlled apps and infotainment to advanced diagnostics.To build this new market, the mobile and the automotive industry will need to work in collaboration to surmount the challenges and deliver its promise.The industry is gearing up for a significant shift that will leave the landscape changed forever : whether you are a mobile network operator, automaker, software developer or hardware vendor there are huge opportunities on offer.

In 2011,Machina Research conducted a market sizing study (Machine-to-Machine (M2M) Communication in the Automotive Sector (2010-20), which forecast major growth in both telematics and infotainment services between 2010 and 2020. Automakers indicated that:Telematics and infotainment will be offered across vehicle brands, with a critical mass on embedded solutions :Tethered solutions will continue, with a focus on providing upgradable solutions for technology and, hence, the higher bandwidth services, i.e. infotainment, high bandwidth apps (music & video) : Embedded solutions will continue for vehicle-centric,high-reliability and high availability apps (such as eCall and bCall) :Infotainment and video services are expected to grow exponentially.Machina’s forecast for global wireless traffic generated by embedded mobility in the automotive sector shows entertainment and internet access driving an exponential increase in data traffic.

Mobile operators are seeking to better understand the auto industry’s requirements with respect to: How in-vehicle services, and their connectivity requirements,are evolving.How to enable all appropriate connectivity options for services.Greater understanding of these two aspects will facilitate the development of tailored approaches and services to support telematics and infotainment,in line with the underlying needs of automakers. Moreover,cross industry collaboration will be required to overcome some existing ecosystem barriers.

The 3GPP international cellular standards group has announced that it has completed work on the initial cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (V2X) standard, for inclusion in the next LTE Release 14. The specification was completed last week during the 3GPP RAN meeting in New Orleans, with further enhancements to support additional V2X operational scenarios to follow, which should be ready with Rel-14 in March 2017.V2V communications are based on D2D communications defined as part of ProSe services in Release 12 and Release 13 of the LTE specification. A new D2D interface has been enhanced for vehicular use cases, specifically addressing high speed (up to 250km/h) and high density (thousands of nodes). The design is scalable for different bandwidths including 10MHz bandwidth and two high level deployment configurations are currently defined. Both configurations use a dedicated carrier for V2V communications and use GNSS satellites for time synchronization.

GSMA,along with a group of leading mobile operators,has already finalised the market requirements for the development of standardised embedded SIMs and for the remote management of SIMs.This has paved the way for the implementation of a worldwide-embedded SIM standard, reducing fragmentation and driving scale for ‘connected’ devices across various industries, including automotive, consumer electronics, healthcare and utilities.The goal of this initiative is to enable remote SIM management,helping drive global momentum for new, innovative and cost effective connected devices that will enhance daily life, while retaining the security and flexibility of current SIM card form factors.

AT&T was the first to enter the market with a proprietary, single global SIM platform giving automotive, consumer and M2M equipment makers the ability to work through a single carrier to wirelessly enable and connect products.Announced last year, AT&T’s single SIM platform delivers built-in access to wireless and data networks throughout most of the world, with service in more than 200 countries and access to more than 600 carriers worldwide.AT&T spearheads two major initiatives to lead innovation in the connected car market – a first-of-its-kind connected car center in Atlanta, called the AT&T Drive Studio, and a modular, global automotive platform called AT&T Drive.

The AT&T Drive Studio integrates AT&T solutions across multiple companies and serves as a hub where AT&T can respond to needs of automotive manufacturers and the auto ecosystem at large.AT&T Drive Studio showcases end-to-end solutions that AT&T and its contributors can provide automotive manufacturers around the world.Significant ecosystem players are committed to the Drive Studio and will work alongside AT&T, including Accenture, Amdocs, Clear Channel’s iHeart Radio, Ericsson, Jasper Wireless, Synchronoss and VoiceBox.

A number of options exist to connect a vehicle, including: Embedded: Both the connectivity (modem and UICC) and intelligence is built directly into the vehicle Tethered: Connectivity is provided through external modems (via wired, Bluetooth or WiFi connections and/or UICCs), while the intelligence remains embedded in the vehicle. Integrated: Connectivity is based upon integration between the vehicle and the owner’s handset, in which all communication modules, UICC, and intelligence remains strictly on the phone. The human machine interface (HMI) generally remains in the vehicle (but not always).

Each of these different connectivity options relies upon different mechanisms for linking the car to cellular technology.As the M2M market grows, so does the maturity and intelligence of M2M cloud platforms, enabling intelligent devices, back-end systems and cloud platforms to seamlessly integrate. A M2M cloud platform could bring about a global solution for managing connected devices across different networks and interfaces. This is attractive to the end-user facing brand (typically the automaker) as it enables the performance of the device on the network to be visible and troubleshooting processes to be performed.

A keyfactor driving the Connected Car is that connectivity will be necessitated by regulatory mandates such as the European Commission initiative eCall, which calls for a system to be fitted to all new vehicles by 2015, meaning emergency services will automatically be contacted and given the vehicle location in the event of a serious accident. Automotive OEM manufacturers across the board are fully prepared for the eCall legislation, although to what extent and when it will finally be implemented is unclear.There is no doubt throughout the industry that the connected vehicle will provide significant advantages in terms of life saving solutions and stolen vehicle tracking.

So what do we envisage for the Connected Car over the next ten years? Futurist Ian Pearson (@timeguide) see the vehicle developing into a fully personalised, virtual environment with intelligent automation, creating a totally new relationship between the vehicle, the driver, and the passenger. As you get in, the seat will automatically move to your preferred position, as instructed by your phone. Even fabrics and other interior surfaces will be able to adapt their appearance and textures electronically to your taste. Heads-up displays let drivers keep their eyes on the road.

Many people will wear video visors that overlay data onto the field of view, making augmented reality a part of everyday life, and changing the appearance of everything around us, including car interiors and the world outside.In-car sensors will recognise and highlight points of interest and dangers ahead. Passengers will see an electronically enhanced world too, with information overlaid into their view, in addition to games, video entertainment and web access.Some of this data will come from the car and some from apps on their phone.

Further in the future, cars will come to you. They will take you where you want, and then you can just abandon them to go off to serve someone else. They will in effect offer a comfortable and socially inclusive form of public transport. This could even lead to buses disappearing from our streets WOW..exciting times ahead as the mobile and automotive industries work hard to connect cars and networks for our pleasure and their profit !!

Sadiq Malik ( Telco Strategist )


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