When it comes to selling cars, just how important is connectivity? Can the services provided by connected cars, such as Internet radio, remote diagnostics, and real-time traffic information, influence vehicle buying decisions? And if so, how much?
In 2014, telecom giant Telefónica decided to find out. In a survey of 5000 consumers, the company found that 71% of respondents were interested in using, or were already using, connected car services. Other studies report similar findings. Parks Associates, for example, found that 78% of people who already own a connected car will demand connectivity features in their next vehicle.
Of course, “connected car” means different things to different people. It could, for example, refer to a car that has a built-in cellular modem, or to a car that uses the driver’s smartphone to access online services. Moreover, the features offered by my connected car may differ completely from the features offered by your connected car. But no matter what form it takes, or what applications it enables, connectivity in the car can be a challenge to implement. In a recent blog post on LinkedIn, Roger Lanctot of Strategy Analytics attests to this difficulty, stating that nearly every car maker seeking to implement connectivity has stumbled on issues ranging from bad connections and poor user interfaces to interminable delays.
Consider, for example, the challenge of embedding a cellular modem in a vehicle — or any other embedded device, for that matter. Initializing and managing the modem requires a large set of software that, among other things, must:
- handle modem reset and recovery, because even the best modems crash
- monitor and manage power consumption to optimize current draw
- ensure data throughput and reliability
- reduce or eliminate call-drops and call-setup failures
The challenge doesn’t stop there. Network operators, for example, are paying more attention to M2M connections on their networks, thereby increasing the demand for operator-approved modems and modules. Meanwhile, system designers may need to swap out modems to target different regions or price points, or to take advantage of newer, more capable modem technology. The goal, then, is to implement a flexible, future-proofed design that can accommodate such changes with a bare minimum of fuss.
Enter a new webinar hosted by my colleagues Karen Bachman and Leo Forget. In “Applying smartphone wireless technology to connected embedded systems,” they will examine the challenges of embedding wireless connectivity and explore how to address these challenges through software frameworks developed for smartphones and other mobile devices. True to the title, Karen and Leo will look at use cases not just for automotive, but for other industries as well, such as medical and industrial. The bulk of the conversation, though, will focus on common issues that embedded developers face, regardless of the device type they are building.
Attend this webinar to learn about:
- Applications that stand to benefit the most from wireless connectivity
- Challenges and complexity of bringing connectivity to cars and other embedded systems
- Potential security and privacy risks introduced by wireless connectivity, including unauthorized access and unencrypted data transfer
- The benefits of creating flexible products that easily accommodate advances in modem technology
Here are the webinar coordinates:
Applying smartphone wireless technology to connected embedded systems
Thursday, March 26, 2015
12:00 pm to 1:00 pm EST