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Vodafone starts field trials of connected car platform

A new system designed to improve road safety is being tried out on actual roads in the UK.

It has been developed by Vodafone, Nokia and Chordant, with some kind of public sector seal of approval and maybe even public funds. Positioned as a ‘mobility cloud platform’, it seems to be an initial step towards using the mobile edge to perma-connect cars and allow them to constantly communicate with their environment.

“It’s fantastic to see vehicle to everything mobile technology being deployed on the open road for the first time in the UK,” said Luke Ibbetson, Head of Group R&D at Vodafone. “While the system is delivered via smartphone, drivers will need to use handsfree equipment. Meanwhile we are working with the automotive industry and road operators to have the technology integrated within vehicles and transport infrastructure to make our roads safer.”

“Safety is of paramount importance to the development of systems that connect road users across mobile platforms,” said Chris Johnson, Head of Nokia’s Global Enterprise Business. “Running on Vodafone’s edge, Nokia analytics software will apply data insights to make roads safer, provide a better experience for users, and enhance road infrastructure management efficiency in a way that can easily be deployed across multiple geographies.”

“Road Operators are seeking to digitally interact and exchange information with vehicles and road users”, said Ash Wheeler, SVP at Chordant, “We’re delighted that, through this partnership and the services we are creating, transport authorities and vehicle manufacturers around the world will be able to test, validate and rapidly deploy standardised C-ITS services over existing cellular networks, improving road safety, reducing congestion and unlocking new driver experiences.”

At this early stage there’s no autonomous mucking about going on, it’s more about empowering the driver with real-time information and sending data to some kind of traffic Big Brother so it can get a better idea of what’s going on, hence the government involvement. This feels like an incremental step towards living the connected car dream that is expected to culminate in fully autonomous driving.

  • Connected & Autonomous Vehicles

  • Connected Cars & Autonomous Vehicles Europe


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