It’s easy to envisage a scenario in the future, where customers request their vehicle-based data to be centrally stored, signing up to a third-party like Google, to consolidate and manage it on their behalf. As aftermarket devices become more embedded and cars become increasingly connected to the wider IoT ecosystem, the potential attack surface will become much larger, resulting in new risks and potential threats to personal safety, security and privacy. One way to simplify the challenge, while still allowing for rapid innovation, is for OEMs to develop a secure perimeter layer that acts as a ‘security fence’ for all internal systems, rather trying to lock-down individual modules. Secure in-car gateways could then ensure that any transmission/ communication was controlled using various forms of authentication. OEMs, tier-one suppliers and IT service providers will have to work together to understand vulnerabilities and develop
OEMs, tier-one suppliers and IT service providers will have to work together to understand vulnerabilities and develop cybersecurity solutions to keep car-data secure. Regulation has a key part to play in this. In 2017, the UK government issued ‘The Key Principles of Vehicle Cyber Security for Connected and Automated Vehicles’, which offers some guidelines for maintaining the security of wirelessly connected cars. What are your views on the increased use of Analytics in the automotive sector, where do you see it going? For the past five years, CMS has been working to make data actionable for telematics companies and insurers. During this time, we have seen the emphasis shift from historical data analysis, towards real-time analytics and alerting – particularly on driver risk.
Applications which predict events, require significantly more data - tens of billions of data points, rather than hundreds of millions. The glaring issue is that there often isn’t enough raw data to train the analytic models. In some instances, in-device filtering limits the information available so impacts its usefulness. Instead, of trying to shrink data, the emphasis should be on developing scalable, data aggregation and analytic solutions that invisibly and seamlessly automate the handling of large-scale data while retaining its richness. Delivering actionable information while minimising the data burden on people and services. Increasingly, analytics is giving us a better understanding of the driver, their behavior, their interaction with the vehicle, their surroundings and other road users. This information will form the foundation to build more personalised and targeted car-related services and safer and more enjoyable user experiences. Analytics also unlocks the value pool inherent in data, so it can be monetised by third parties, as long as the data-use is authorised in advance with the car owner/driver. For example, geo-linked advertising, personalised to the driver on in-car infotainment systems as piloted recently by General Motors. Aggregating analytics across millions of vehicles will also deliver new insight and identify trends that can be used to make roads safer, cities smarter, vehicles more environmentally-friendly and traffic more manageable.
Comment for the need for “dynamic collaboration” in automotive ecosystem.
The era of big technology companies delivering the whole technology stack is declining. Instead, they are becoming the glue that sticks all the players together. This is most apparent with Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure. Automotive business models are also changing and so is the technology supporting it. This requires brand new solutions to be created, not just tweaks or upgrades,
making the pace of change very high. To accommodate this, companies are specialising and co-operating even if they compete (co-opetition), driven largely by the increasing complexity and data volume required to solve certain problems using machine learning. If dynamic collaboration works, then the ability for customers to move or make their data available increases substantially, ultimately underpinning new products and business models. At the moment this is fine as this new market is growing so fast and there is room for everyone. It will become more interesting when growth starts to plateau, and companies start to focus on the new data revenue opportunities. Realising that open sharing may not be good for their short-term revenue growth (even though closing it down will harm them in the long term). Over the next few years, we will see the development of more symbiotic relationships between auto, tech and wireless players as well as governments and insurers, with the aim of making ‘mobility’ smarter, safer and more efficient. At CMS, we are already actively involved in several collaborative projects such as Transport Systems Catapult and the Silverstone Technology Cluster. We are also partnering with multiple large and small companies to deliver solutions that would be impossible alone, creating embedded end-to-end, data/telematics/connectivity propositions that improve and add value to every element in the chain.
How is Cloud empowering automotive companies to expand business agility and capability?
Cloud has enabled small companies to access the same infrastructure that used to be reserved for the IBM’s of the world. It also gives large organisations such as motor manufacturers the opportunity to work with smaller more innovative organisations,
who can use the cloud to deliver new types of specialist applications and services, faster, more nimbly, and with less resource than if they tried to do it themselves. The cloud is also allowing OEMs and insurers to exploit SaaS services, to enhance the accuracy and functionality of their telematics solutions. At CMS, our software can be licensed and supplied over the cloud to embed new capability for global customers, while hitting high standards in development practices and ensuring GDPR compliance. Using Microsoft Azure also gives us additional deployment capability, to a common standard, across multiple data centres in different countries. Automotive companies are already using cloud technology across their businesses, for supply-chain, operations, manufacturing, and logistics, but they have yet to exploit it to connect vehicles and consumers. This may leave a gap in the market for the likes of Amazon, Android etc. who are creating the common platforms that are being embedded in the vehicles and link back to common cloud systems that everyone knows. We already have Alexa in retro-fit hardware, soon it may be built-in. While many OEMs are happy to wait for generic platforms, players like Volkswagen are walking up to the potential. It has invested 3.5 billion Euros in a new connected computing platform, vw.OS, which it aims to introduce in all its electric vehicles by 2020. This will connect embedded applications to handle vehicle functionality and provide consumers with connection to exciting new lifestyle services. It will be interesting to see how this battle for in-car cloud ownership plays out.