The car â€” no longer just a way to get around â€” has emerged as the next frontier for connectivity. Â For many consumers, itâ€™s a secondary space thatâ€™s doing double duty as a place where work, entertainment and safety technologies come together.
In the past, high-end features including infotainment systems, driver assistance sensors and cameras and telematics â€” a fancy way of describing the technology that integrates global positioning and navigation â€” were reserved for luxury-class vehicles.
But thatâ€™s changing, according to market researcher IHS iSuppli, as the cost of sensors, systems and the wires that connect them continue to fall. Entry-level cars, such as those made by Broadcom partner Hyundai, are set to be outfitted with the latest connected technologies, such as GPS, surround view parking, lane departure warning systems and backseat displays.
This week at SAE Convergence in Detroit, Broadcom will be talking about the connected car of the future alongside its partners, and other major automakers, suppliers and technology providers. Weâ€™ll be exhibiting wired and wireless technologies that are set to bring next-generation technologies like infotainment, telematics and Advanced Driver Assistance (ADAS) to entry-level car buyers.
All of these features are made possible with in-car Ethernet, a cost-effective technology thatâ€™s being championed by Broadcom and its auto manufacturer partners. Ethernet has the potential to redefine in-car networking, because itâ€™s lightweight, scalable and supports the quick deployment of new applications. Already, a virtual whoâ€™s-who of automakers, including Ford, BMW, General Motors and now Hyundai, have embraced Broadcomâ€™s BroadR-Reach Ethernet technology.
And the ecosystem continues to grow. Today, the OPEN Alliance Special Industry Group announced its expansion with leading global automakers joining the alliance to champion the benefits of Ethernet for automotive. As a founding member of the OPEN Alliance, Broadcom has witnessed a 13X growth in membership since the groupâ€™s inception a year ago. New members include Daimler, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Nissan, Renault and Volvo Group Trucks.
Check out this techy primer on how Ethernet in cars works by BMWâ€™s Dr. Kirsten Matheus, who chairs the OPEN SIG.
As open standards proliferate in the automotive industry, features that were once considered â€śpremiumâ€ť will become part of the mainstream. All of these features are now within reach for the average car buyer, and are coming soon to a highway near you.