Japanese Automakers Take on Telcos in V2V Comms Battle

A group of Japanese automotive giants are taking up the digital cudgels in a bid to grab the initiative in the battle with telecoms companies for dominance in the V2X communications arena.

Suzuki, Subaru, Daihatsu, Toyota and Mazda have reached an agreement to jointly develop technical specifications for next-generation vehicle communications devices. They also agree to promote the common use of communications systems, by using connected services to link vehicles in the IoT world aiming to enhance their appeal, value and services to consumers.

The group recognize that connected, autonomous/automated, shared, and electric (CASE) is said to be bringing about major transformations in the automotive industry with rapid advances in the connected domain, in relation to the communications and data aspects of technology and business including cloud services, IoT, big data, and AI. It also recognizes that currently automakers are independently developing vehicle communications devices, even where the same connected services such as remote operation functions are provided, and adopting a different approach in proceeding with development and deploying relevant resources.

Naturally, this trend is bound to be less efficient while causing friction between different solutions from the disparate communications solutions. So, the group believe it can provide safer and more convenient connected services by jointly developing vehicle communications devices, which are basic functions of the connected car. The group also want joint development of applications and services as an in-house domain to achieve greater efficiency and accelerate the development of vehicle communications devices. Each company can focus more on the development of applications and services on this common infrastructure through these steps.

To this end, Suzuki, Subaru, Daihatsu and Mazda, will be incorporating their own technologies into the base vehicle communications technologies developed by Toyota, while together build systems for next-generation connected cars with common connection specifications from vehicles to networks and the vehicle communications device center. The group hopes that standardizing communications will improve consumer communications experiences both in quality and speed. At the same time, it should be possible to reduce the development costs of each of the automakers and simplify system operation.

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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