According to Intel and Ford, self-driving cars will be in the markets in 2021. This is about 5 years earlier than expected a year ago by some market researchers.The development of autonomous cars with no steering wheels, brakes or driver is  faster than expected.

According to the CES2017 insights from leading tech companies and consumers, there are several trends that are backing this fast development. First, 5 G networks are being built by large network operators in the US, Europe and Asia. In order to “drive” such self-driving car it requires data and analytics.

For example according to Intel CEO Brian Krzanich one self-driving car is generating data which is comparable to 3000 people operating with their smartphones and laptops. So, one can think that one self-driving car must support the data traffic and connectivity of 3000 people at the same time. In order to have major break throught with the cars, faster networks and data speed is indeed needed.

Self-driving car – a second home?

While smart homes and smart cities are also developing at the same time, one could also say that self-driving cars would become second homes for those that are travelling longer journeys. People can listen to their favourite music, see news, read books, eat dinner or sleep. By the way, Sleep Tech- category (totally new) generated several exhibitors during the trade show.

There are several tech companies and car manufacturers working with self-driving cars. For example Google with Android OS, Apple with iOs, Tesla, Ford Motors, Volkswagen, Mercedes Benz and Toyota.

Goolge has named its self-driving car project called Waymo and says that the car has been driving nearly 2 million miles in the US. One aspect with the cars is of course the safety. Companies are working hard to make travelling safier and zero target in accidents is the target figure. Google has said that it is expecting the self driving car to be ready to the world soon.

New launches at CES

During the trade show, for example car maker Chrysler announced their all-electric Portal -concept. It is an electric car  and the hub is the mobile phone.

“Recognition and user authentication are the next level of personalization and a primary driving factor for the user experience. Facial recognition and voice biometric technologies work together to provide a seamless personalization experience. As a result, all passengers can set up individual and group settings for an enjoyable, customized experience”, the company says in the press release.

For example, it tells you who is in the vehicle and configure preferred settings, such as music, lighting, vehicle and seat temperatures.

Voice- a megatrend

Voice integration is also becoming more common. CES estimates that there will be new robots and smart home applications integrating voice recognition in their services and products already this year. Voice is making things easier, smoother and faster in certain situations and it is enlargering the digitalisation to new era; in the cars and at home.

Päivi Härkönen

 

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