The connected car has long since become more than a utopia. Networking is increasingly straying away from being a basic driving service and is working its way onto higher (business) levels. More powerful networks such as 5G will permit ever more data-hungry advanced services in cars. Over-the-air updates might become the new business model – and millennials that have forgotten/lost their smartphones be able to use WiFi for € 1.99 per 100 MB.
With new cars that provide convenient networking functions straight from the factory, it’s not an issue. A relatively recent, but very optimistic, study forecasts that between 2018 and 2022 125 million connected cars will be sent out to the world’s markets. In Europe, penetration is apparently going to be almost 100 percent by 2020 (next year!) . How that is going to happen in view of the number of cars – not just on German roads – that are a good few years old I have no idea. When you’re out for a drive on a Sunday, just take a look at the number of “H”s that you see on license plates. eCall in or out. Not every driver has the desire or budget to buy a new car just because new networking technology has been developed. Smartphones can do the same job. Retrofit hardware like the famous on-board units for trucks are a pragmatic alternative when it comes to connectivity. They are perfect for those that want to enjoy the benefits of networking without having to deal with buying a new vehicle. I’m interested to see how many networked cars I will see by the end of 2020. And for how many the car radio is thought of as connectivity. At the Daimler EDM CAE Forum we will be showing how cars can be made connective – regardless of whether they are coming straight off the production line or are being retrofitted. Why don’t you drop by?