Wednesday, 14 March 2012 16:13

Smartphone vehicle integration soon to be standard: report

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The integration of smartphones into consumer vehicles will become all but standard on new models, according to one leading analyst, which also forecasts that 92 million vehicles will feature technology to integrate the smartphone into the head-unit by 2016.

According to a new report from Juniper Research, new protocols such as MirrorLink from the Connected Car Consortium will help automotive manufacturers like  Mercedes and Toyota follow Ford in introducing technology which allows the smartphone to become hub, enabling mobile internet, smartphone app and content access across the range of vehicles that they sell.

'Integrating the smartphone into consumer cars represents a new route for the mobile Internet and infotainment to enter the vehicle,' says the report author, Anthony Cox.
 
The Juniper report notes that the main inhibitor for this form of telematics will be limited growth in the automotive market over the next five years, particularly in developed regions.

In the commercial telematics market, Cox says Juniper has observed an increasing level of sophistication as fleet managers use telematics to increase fleet efficiency, comply with regulations and monitor driver behaviour. 'Players are also leveraging the power of the cloud and internet portals to enhance the services they offer,' Cox adds.

Key findings from the Juniper Research report include:

'¢    Commercial telematics is seeing sustained take-up, driven by its promise of increasing driver efficiency and managing costs

'¢    Regulatory initiatives such as the eCall driver safety project and Brazil's regulation 245 governing stolen vehicles will boost telematics take-up in some geographical regions, and

'¢    Though several insurance companies are trialling the technology, insurance telematics remains in its infancy with most widespread commercial roll-outs not happening until at least 2014

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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