ATX proposes dot.car initiative

ATX proposes dot.car initiative

ATX Group has now announced an initiative with the Detroit-based Connected Vehicle Trade Association (CVTA) to convene an international workgroup to address how to safely access Internet content through embedded and nomadic devices in vehicles.

ATX and CVTA will launch an immediate effort to invite automobile manufacturers and interested parties in the automotive electronics value chain to participate in an open discussion and process for setting requirements for in-vehicle web browsing.

ATX also proposes a generic top-level domain – dot.car (similar to dot.com) – that would enable websites to be specifically designed to meet the challenging safety and consumer requirements for delivering web content into the vehicle.

ATX president & CEO, Steve Millstein, points out that the Internet has become such a daily part of our lives that its pervasive use in the vehicle is inevitable. Since you won't stop drivers from browsing, you might as well make the practice as safe as possible.

"This proposal is similar to the adaptation that was required to develop and interface between the smartphone and the web," says Millstein. "Browsing the Internet in the vehicle is a unique environment with unique characteristics."

"Internet content is beginning to enter the vehicle environment, and we need to bring together all the stakeholders addressing safe means of obtaining, viewing and interacting with this content," added Scott McCormick, president of the CVTA. "This is a timely and important topic that we hope will draw global interest across a variety of affected industries."

In addition to web content, it is envisioned that dot.car websites could also utilise such telematics-centric, real-time data as vehicle performance and maintenance diagnostics data, as well as vehicle location data. Also proposed is a telematics firewall process specifically designed to ensure the total protection of the vehicle from content that is delivered over the air to the in-vehicle browser for the entire life cycle of the automobile.

As envisioned, the initial users will be automobile manufacturers and their technology and communications partners and suppliers. This group would need to define requirements in terms of the expected user experience. While the primary vision of the dot.car domain is to give motorists the ability to surf the Internet and experience customised Web browsing, OEMs would also benefit from the process by:

  • Ensuring flexibility to adapt the embedded user interface for the life of the vehicle
  • Dramatically reducing lead time to market compared to the current embedded software design process
  • Achieving the capability to customise according to vehicle model, country and motorist
  • Facilitating easy customer access to content and updates
  • Meeting customer expectations of web browsing while keeping a safe and convenient driving experience

Anyone interesting in discussing this issue further will find ATX at Telematics Detroit 2008 this week. ATX will take part in a panel discussion on Wednesday, May 22nd at 09h00.


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