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Telefonica finally joins 5G car club

Self-driving car flat modern illustration

Telefonica has announced it will join the 5G Automotive Association (5GAA), as the excitement for autonomous vehicles continues to slowly grow.

The association was launched back in September, currently counting Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom, AT&T, Huawei, Ford and BMW, amongst others in the membership. Telefonica might be a bit tardy, but better late than never. Alongside the 5GAA, the team has also joined the European Automotive-Telecom Alliance (EATA) as it cashes in on the craze.

“We are delighted to join the 5GAA to bring all our efforts on the 5G technology to the automotive industry,” said Vicente Muñoz, Telefonica´s Chief IoT Officer. “We recently showcased our recent progress in 5G with our connected car demo at MWC in Barcelona and continue to work in this arena to make things move faster.”

The announcement itself builds on the increasing focus on the future of driving at the telco, as the team participating in a successful demonstration with Ericsson at Mobile World Congress in February. Here, Ericsson provided the interface and the base station, with Telefonica did the transport network to demonstrate how a car could be driven remotely using 5G technologies.

Elsewhere in the automotive arena, according to the New York Times Ford has replaced its CEO Mark Fields with Jim Hackett, who currently leads the car brands venture into autonomous and connected vehicles.

The move itself comes after a three year tenure from Fields, and perhaps demonstrates the importance of emerging technologies in the automotive giant. Fields has been under pressure in recent months from investors, as share price dropped 40% over the course of his leadership as concerns were raised that Ford was falling behind in the race to the autonomous vehicles.

With Hackett taking the reign’s it won’t be too long before we see bigger investments in emerging tech at Ford. The team has highlighted areas such as big data, artificial intelligence, advanced robotics and 3D printing in a statement.

“We’re moving from a position of strength to transform Ford for the future,” Executive Chairman Bill Ford said. “Jim Hackett is the right CEO to lead Ford during this transformative period for the auto industry and the broader mobility space. He’s a true visionary who brings a unique, human-centered leadership approach to our culture, products and services that will unlock the potential of our people and our business.”

  • Connected & Autonomous Vehicles

  • Connected Cars & Autonomous Vehicles Europe


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