Convenes industry forum to discuss vehicle sensor data transmission specifications
Nokia HERE, provider of mapping, navigation and location experiences, recently brought together a diverse group of automotive companies, system vendors and suppliers to discuss the establishment of an interface format for how in-vehicle sensor data is transmitted to a location cloud.
During the forum held at a HERE event in Berlin, Germany, participants representing 16 companies agreed the industry must define a format in which vehicle sensor data is ingested by a location cloud. Additionally, participants discussed a range of technical issues, including data content, security, anonymisation, and transmission accuracy and efficiency based on the ingestion interface specification recently published by HERE.
HERE, which is set to be acquired by an automotive consortium, stated that modern vehicles collect vast sums of information on road and traffic conditions through onboard sensors, all of which can be utilised to improve the safety and experience of nearby drivers, such as real time map updates and alerts on traffic or hazardous conditions ahead.
As part of the company’s bid to standardise the way this data is transmitted, HERE added that if vehicles transmit sensor data in different formats, the ability for a cloud to efficiently aggregate and analyse the data at scale is lost and benefits to the driver become less realised.
“The ability to transmit in real time sensor data across different vehicles on the road requires deep industry-wide collaboration,” said Dietmar Rabel, head of product management for the automated driving program at HERE. “But when we do, the result should be fewer accidents and more efficient journeys, as well as moving the industry closer to its aspiration for cars that can fully understand their environment and drive themselves.”
A recent forecast by automotive technology research firm SBD predicts that, by 2020, over 30 million vehicles will be sold annually with built-in connectivity, generating more than 163 million terabytes of data each year via their dozens of on-board cameras and sensor technologies.
Said Ronald Hain, head of backend development team at Continental, who participated in the forum: “As more connected vehicles come to market, Continental looks forward to participating in the industry’s effort to define how vehicle sensor data gets transmitted and processed. This is important for Continental’s eHorizon project where we merge data from different car makers in a backend. The discussions at this forum were incredibly robust, key issues to address were identified, such as how to transmit accurate sensor information given that every OEM will have different sensors on board, and I believe we now have a solid foundation for our work ahead.”
The creation of a common specification for in-vehicle sensor data is prerequisite to an industry standard, following a similar approach taken by HERE and its industry peers to usher in Advanced Driver Assistant Systems (ADAS) Interface Specification. In the upcoming weeks and months HERE will re-engage industry peers across the globe to establish a formal working group on sensor ingestion standardisation.
Nokia announced earlier this month that it has reached an agreement to sell HERE to a consortium of major automotive companies, comprising of Audi, BMW Group and Daimler. The transaction values HERE at an enterprise value of Euro 2.8 billion and is expected to close in the first quarter of 2016, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals.