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Intelligent mobility: connected cars and autonomous driving

Smart, complex, and integrated: The automotive industry and transport logistics are facing a major change

On the road to tomorrow's mobility

Mobility of the future means intelligently connected driving. But there is still a long way to go before vehicles connect with each other or with other mobility services, or even drive completely autonomously. In the automotive industry, there is probably no more demanding technical project at the moment for which almost all digital technologies have to be integrated and managed. T-Systems is your reliable development and implementation partner.

The automotive industry on the way to digitalization

Man is sitting at the wheel of a car and using his right hand, his smartphone is attached to the dashboard.

Progress in mobility has reached a new dimension. So far, the focus has been on increasing speed, range, and travel comfort. In the future, priority will be given to intelligent systems that make travel more flexible, more environmentally friendly, and also more responsive to needs.

In short: mobility is changing into a comprehensive service – Mobility as a Service (MaaS). This includes the combination of the various means of locomotion and all available means of transport.

The car continues to play a central role here. As part of the process, it will develop into a connected and/or even autonomous vehicle. This is the forecast of analysts at the European market analysis and consulting company PAC. According to the experts' expectations, the demand for software and IT services in Germany, especially in the Connected Car segment, will rise sharply by 2022.

For the industries involved to be able to concentrate on developing new business models, services, and products, the technological basis must be secure, stable, and reliable. Deutsche Telekom and T-Systems are your reliable partners for providing enabling these technologies for digital transformation: connectivity, cloud platforms, security.

Value Creation from connected car services

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Connected vehicles – digital, data-driven mobility

Outdoor shot of man in the car looking dreamily out of the side window while driving.

There are already connected vehicles today with a wide range of available functions such as mobile internet, streaming services, location-based recommendations, real-time navigation, remote control, and technical status displays, such as tire pressure or oil level. 

Further applications for connected vehicles are under development:

  • See-through: cars use the cameras of the vehicles driving in front of them to detect dangers on the road earlier
  • Predictive maintenance: analysis of a vehicle's wear and tear data and timely planning of maintenance cycles and workshop appointments
  • 5G-use cases such as Car2X, Teleoperated Driving, or Platooning

The fact is: in the future, digitalization with such applications will penetrate ever deeper into the core areas of vehicles. However, large amounts of data are produced that must be processed in a stable and secure manner. The connected car also needs continuous network availability with short latency times, which are mandatory for road traffic. Many of the future connected car use cases therefore require the new 5G mobile communications standard. Connected cars must also be protected against hacker access. This requires new security solutions and particularly secure IT and cloud environments.

Autonomous driving – small steps to great complexity

The special focus of the automotive industry is currently autonomous driving. Almost all digital technologies must be integrated and managed here. Self-driving vehicles have long been intensively tested on test tracks and also in initial pilot projects on the road. After all, autonomous driving will open up new business potential in both passenger and freight transport in the future. Large digital and automotive companies are already investing heavily in this area.

But the path to get there is still challenging and characterized by many technical challenges. For example, how do vehicles react swiftly to unexpected traffic situations using intelligent sensors? At present, the limits of this approach are particularly apparent in bad weather, because today's sensors are not capable of dealing with rain, snow, and fog. Central cloud infrastructures help to provide vehicles with information about road conditions.

Another hurdle is data transmission: although the 5G wireless standard is promising because it guarantees reliable quality in terms of latency and bandwidth, for certain real-time requirements, even 5G latency is too long. Completely autonomous driving is not feasible without decentralized information sources – mobile edge computing, i.e. tiny data centers at reasonable distances on the roadside, bring the relevant environmental information into a local cloud and to all connected vehicles nearby.

Intelligent connectivity is in our DNA. Find out what’s offered by T-Systems:

  • Core competence in connectivity: quick and reliable communication networks and know-how in the area of 5G
  • Core competence in cloud and big data: complex architecture consisting of centralized cloud installations and decentralized edge computing devices and mobile vehicles, all generating and processing data
  • Core competence in security: clear identification, protection against hackers and manipulation
  • Core competence in digitalization: participation in national and European test fields on intelligent connected mobility

Strong platform(s) for connected driving

Blurred shot of a person sitting at the wheel of a car.

One thing is very important for connected and autonomous vehicles: the fast, secure, and high-performance processing and interpretation of data – the basis for business models of tomorrow's mobility. T-Systems has many years of experience in the development, integration, and worldwide operation of mobile vehicle services – with the highest service levels and data security, made in Germany.

Read more in our topic special "Connected mobility". 

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