With the gradual consolidation of wireless standards and the rapid improvement of smart technology in the automotive sector, the pace of development in connected cars is also increasing. In particular, the evolution of electric cars has taken a back seat and has given way to other major trends in green automotive development, including low carbon energy sources, lightweight body materials, intelligent functions, intelligent traffic management systems and car-sharing systems.
IoV (Internet of Vehicles) is the network of IoT-enabled vehicles that communicate constantly with each other and with their surroundings to enable autonomous driving. It has become the fastest growing segment of the broader IoT market.
Between 2016 and 2019, its CAGR will be 22.9%. And according to forecasts by IHS Markit, the worldwide connected car market is expected to grow to 350 million units by 2022, or 24% of the global automotive market. The new sale of connected cars is expected to reach 98 million or 94% of the market.
Within IoV, every vehicle has an intelligent 'brain' that can handle complex behaviours, such as environmental awareness, intelligent decision making, and coordinated steering and execution. This enables safe, comfortable, energy efficient and even automatic driving.
However, Dr. Qi Zhanning, President of HiRain Technologies: "Despite its exciting prospects, the IoV market in China has not yet established a solid, sustainable and profitable business model that allows profit sharing for all players." And he is by no means alone in this opinion. At the end of last year, the CAICT in a whitepaper, stated that "the business model of intelligent transport applications and collaborative applications for autonomous driving is still in its infancy."
But that does not mean that it does not grow. According to a report of the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) from December 2018 expects the Chinese IoV market maintained its growth rate of over 40% and exceed 2025 more than 200 billion yuan (about 30 billion USD) becomes.
"I believe that the growth of IoV technology will drive domestic and even global market demand strongly and give the entire automotive market a new lease of life." said Zhanning, who has been involved with IoV technology and intelligent driving for many years.
HiRain Technologies has offices not only in Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu and Shenzhen, but also in the hotspots of the automotive industry Detroit and Munich. The company is active in research and development as well as in the production of electronic products. It also provides consulting services, acts as a proxy for R&D tools and provides professional training and other services. The manufacturing facilities in Shanghai and Tianjin produce ten million vehicle controls every year. Once the new manufacturing facility in Nantong is operational, another 20 million auto accessories products are expected to be added.
The company, its president said, has a pragmatic goal: to build a solid understanding of automotive network architecture, vehicle control software, systems integration, and the competitive landscape. In this way, it can offer customers tailor-made solutions. And it has helped bring China's automotive technology to the world stage.
The expansion of the overseas market was a strategic decision by HiRain Technologies as well as the decision to partner with u-blox in 2015. "u-blox has definitely brought us leading and professional technical support. We believe in "mutual trust, respect and absolute honesty in all relationships", which reflects u-blox 'integrity and innovation, a spiritual heritage of Swiss companies. Both sides believe they are conquering the market with product technologies and services rather than low price competition. We work together to develop trusted products and see quality as our common business philosophy. " said Zhanning.
A key challenge Zhanning is finding a business model for IoV that customers like to spend money on. The most reliable approach, he said, is the V2X (Vehicle-to-Everything) real time network to improve safety and reduce congestion. "Although there is still a long way to go before introducing innovative business models, China's biggest advantage lies in its huge market. Business model innovations should therefore certainly be the future direction. But first, we need to see ourselves clearly, respond quickly to the market with advanced technologies as a basic requirement, then identify innovative business models and make a breakthrough."
Both sides are optimistic that the IoV development is already offering exceptional opportunities with the publication of favorable guidelines and the enthusiasm of the capital market. The future prospects are promising as long as various industry stakeholders seize opportunities, focus on technology and innovation, put customer needs first, and make good use of all objective and favorable conditions.
Guest blog written by Dr. Qi Zhanning, President of HiRain Technologies.
Courtesy of u-blox.