11 March 2014: During the next decade connectivity will become commonplace in cars – and don’t just take our word for it. Machina Research forecasts that 90% of new cars will include connectivity platforms by 2020 – in contrast with the current percentage, which is less than 10%. By 2022 there will be 1.8 billion M2M connections dedicated to the car industry. This figure includes 700 million connected cars and 1.1 billion post-sale devices for different services, such as navigation, insurance features, stolen vehicle recovery and infotainment.
Given the explosive growth predicted in this area, it was fitting that Telefónica, amongst many other innovative features, showed off connected car potential at its stand at Mobile World Congress 2014. With the Model- S, Telefónica and Tesla demonstrated to visitors the benefits of connected car technology for drivers and passengers. For those of you that didn’t get a chance to take a look inside the Tesla – fear not. Below are some of the highlights:
- Through a SIM card located behind the car’s 17 inch screen, Telefónica provided a mobile Internet connection to the car. This gives the driver complete control of the Tesla’s doors, windows, bonnet as well as providing instant access to Google Maps and digital radio. The driver also has access to real-time diagnostics information enabling a more intelligent and informed driving experience.
- Another connected feature is that Tesla can remotely solve problems that could arise in the car, such as electrical faults. Similarly Tesla can inform the driver of faults before they become serious, helping to improve safety and save costs.
- This connectivity also extends to the driver’s smartphone, where car information can be displayed at any place and any time. For example, a driver could geo-reference their car, check the gas and battery levels and get diagnostic information such as efficiency ratings.
It’s important to realise, however, that this is just the start. The potential of a connected car is multi-dimensional and far reaching. Industry analysts have forecast many other benefits for drivers in the coming years. This includes…
- Congestion warnings: drivers can see the location and severity of traffic jams in real-time
- Access to music and games
- Increased range and choice of uses for connectivity
- Improved design for interfaces
- Access to remote computers and servers
- Better location services: drivers can ask the car where to go for dinner with options and routes appearing immediately
Things are developing rapidly in this space, so keep your eyes peeled for much more in the coming weeks and months. We’ve only just moved off of the starting line.