The first time Marty McFly drove his car Back to the Future, the vision of cool cars was changed forever with cars that fly, spin, shoot and simply take your breath away. Thankfully, we are now arriving at that future where car windscreens turn into HD screens to watch movies, play games, or attend video conferences while enjoying 7.1 surround sound. We now have electric cars that can be fully charged in the time it takes to enjoy a cup of coffee. The age of intelligent electric cars has arrived, and the criteria for making a good car have drastically changed. Users are now focusing more on a car’s intelligent and electric features rather than its mechanical configurations.
Traditionally, users often need to pay large sums of money to buy cars and maintain their cars. In the future, they may be able to buy intelligent vehicles for much less, and then purchase supplementary services, such as autonomous driving services. Consistent experience in multiple scenarios is key to creating cockpit intelligence with ‘entertainment and infotainment’ electronics systems that make the ride enjoyable, and this is what a software-defined automotive industry means.
Moving forward, digital platforms will be necessary to make intelligent electric vehicles by enabling rapid development, cost reductions, and efficiency improvements. Meanwhile, multiple challenges on the user side need to be addressed, such as assurance for safe and trustworthy vehicles. With a view to addressing these needs, the automotive industry is increasingly relying on ICT technologies such as AI, digital power, and cloud services.
As the ICT industry readies to become the new engine for development in the intelligent automotive world, global ICT leaders are working to apply ICT technologies developed over 30-plus years to intelligent vehicle scenarios. They provide customers with new ICT-enabled auto parts, including solutions for intelligent driving, intelligent automobile cloud, e-cockpit, connectivity, and intelligent electrification.
Optical networks, cloud services, and communication capabilities are all necessary for the intelligent transformation of traditional automotive enterprises. For example, to identify red or green lights, or trees or poles in their path, autonomous vehicles rely on computing and cloud services – exactly the areas in which ICT companies such as Huawei has expertise. In 2020, Huawei launched the “Huawei Inside” (HI) brand for the Huawei Intelligent Automotive Solution which adopts a new joint development model, partnering with car OEMs and leveraging its technological expertise to jointly build high-quality intelligent vehicles.
The entry of non-auto legacy participants have bought in a paradigm shift to automotive features which promise to revolutionise the driving experience with solutions such as the e-cockpit solutions which give users a much better experience by offering a rich variety of applications developed by ecosystem partners. For instance, the Augmented Reality Heads-Up Display (AR-HUD) which turns the windshield into a 70-inch HD screen with 7.1 surround sound for movies, games, and video conferences. The solution also offers powerful visual recognition, semantic understanding, and AI technologies to deliver intelligent services by communicating with users in natural language and recognizing their gestures and facial expressions.
Today’s vehicles are also powered by advanced computing technology such as the MDC 810. Just as the CPU is the “brain” of a personal computer, the MDC (Mobile Data Center) is the brain of a driverless car. It processes the extremely large amounts of data coming in from the sensors of the car, aggregates them, and resolves them into a driving solution. Vehicles equipped with MDC Core software meet high functional safety requirements while enabling high-level applications. The MDC provides the computing resources for Automated Driving Solutions. Here are three examples:
Automated Valet – Walk away from the car and it parks itself – then returns to you when you’ve finished dinner, done your shopping, or whatever.
Highway Pilot – You’ve entered the highway. Hit a button and the car takes over the freeway driving.
Traffic Jam Pilot – You’ve hit traffic. In the past, it was frustrating because you couldn’t redirect your attention to something else: you had to keep inching forward, making sure you didn’t rear-end the car ahead of you. Now, Traffic Jam Pilot takes over and drives through the gridlock while you do something more interesting.
The auto industry is poised for a transformation the likes of which it hasn’t seen in almost a century. Future integration of the automotive and ICT industries will create many new strategic opportunities for all ICT players in years to come.
Faster development and deployment of these technologies will require close collaboration between industry, government, academia and others. Companies today are building an industry ecosystem to achieve shared success and accelerate the development of the intelligent automotive industry and bring digital to every vehicle, building a better world for intelligent travel. This will provide the digital system architecture as the foundation of an entire vehicle and manage the complexity of software and hardware to ensure security and reliability.
Author: Standy Nie, President, Enterprise Business, Huawei India
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the original author. These views and opinions do not represent those of The Indian Express Group or its employees.
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