Connected cars are big business for multiple sectors

Last updated: 14 November 2019

According to the DigiWorld Summit post event report (download it here), the connected car is seen as the greatest disruption since the invention of the automobile. This market is hugely valuable, with 420 million connected cars forecast to be on the roads in 2018 (vs. 45 million in 2013) and revenue of €40 billion including 60% of that in services. Here are the three hot topics for the sector right now:

Connect via Smartphone or embedded SIM: the two approaches in the automotive sector

At the Automotive Business Club conference held in Paris last month, François Careche, Electronic Division Manager at Bertrandt, said that two points of view were emerging from the manufacturers:

  • The “universal” ones consider the Smartphone as the key point of connectivity. This is the case with the MirrorLink system and Apple CarPlay, which duplicate smartphone functions on the car’s infotainment system. In this case, the consumer will pay an additional cost on their monthly Smartphone subscription.
  • The “premium” ones defend an on-board model based on an embedded SIM card built into a specific device at the factory. The car houses the operating system, the applications and other services.

This second model seems to be favored by both the mobile industry and the GSMA, who on October 13 released the GSMA Embedded SIM Specification for the remote over-the-air provisioning of M2M devices. This announcement shows that the whole industry is ready to apply a common specification to reduce fragmentation that could otherwise be caused by proprietary solutions.

Get the right connectivity hardware

Unlike many other consumer electronics devices, the average vehicle lifespan is more than 11 years, and so automotive makers need to manage issues linked to the evolution of mobile broadband networks (from 2G to 5G), as well as those around the large data capacity required for SIM cards over time.

Data privacy protection

As connected cars’ have become mainstream, we have also seen a rise in concerns around privacy issues due to the large amount of data collected by infotainment and telematics systems. Hacking, spying and electronic breakdown are some of the main privacy issues.

Who will manage this sensitive data? The automobile maker, the connectivity provider or over-the-top players? In the future, we can expect a battle between huge electronic players such as Google or Apple and automotive players to pick up and secure personal data. There will be a battle between each player to get a piece of the very lucrative pie.