The promise of a fully “connected car” in the near future is an exciting prospect for drivers, passengers, mobile operators and manufacturers alike. Reliable web access on the move could help power real-time traffic advice, allow passengers to enjoy their journey and enable MNOs to deliver relevant, targeted services to motorists.
However, turning a car into a mobile hotspot isn’t as simple as popping a SIM card in the glove box. The environments that automobiles encounter are fierce, and sensitive wireless technology isn’t cut out to withstand the extreme temperatures, excessive vibration and humidity experienced on the road. In addition, the average lifespan of an automobile is significantly longer than that of a smart phone, meaning that any solution must not only be more hard-wearing but also longer-lasting.
Gemalto’s R&D team worked closely with automotive partners to solve some of the unique challenges of providing LTE (4G) in such an environment, such as designing a specialized antenna to ensure reliable connectivity across different mobile networks, which is crucial to successful automotive implementations that require one hundred percent reliability. Our Cinterion Auto MIM platform is optimized to survive extreme environments for the
long life of a vehicle and to ensure continuity of mobile services, which is crucial for eCall and uninterrupted streaming features such as Google Earth™ GPS navigation.
You can find the technology already available in Audi’s new A3 model, and doubtless many more vehicles in the years ahead. While the idea of streaming a movie en route to your destination may seem like a distant reality, in fact it is closer than you think.