Feb 7, 2018,  by Allianz Partners Business Insights

Ford plans to develop connected car open-source platform

The carmaker Ford has announced a series of projects designed to boost the development of connected cars, all through the creation of an open-source platform.

On 2 January Ford announced its connected-car development strategy, which is founded on plans to work with Qualcoom on Vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communications for cities, cyclists and cars. As reported by the website The Verge, it will also be entering into a partnership with Postmates. The aim of the American carmaker is to work hand in hand with Autonomic in developing the Ford Transportation Mobility Cloud, a platform that will connect cities and cars together. 


A cloud for connecting cities and cars


Ford announced in October 2017 that it would be investing in the Californian firm Autonomic, laying what Autonomic CEO Sunny Madra described as the first stone in the Transportation Mobility Cloud. This open-source platform will be accessible to all companies and cities wishing to play a full part in the development of the connected world.

Madra added that the Ford project would allow millions of people to move to cities and for streets to become less congested. People living in the outskirts would be able to access better jobs, with parked and idling cars being replaced by green spaces.

As well as connecting cars and drivers to services, Ford aims to connect cities and cars to each other. Citing pollution as an example, Madra said: “We want a city to define a geofence that would make it so any hybrid vehicle operates in an electric mode there if the city needs to cut down on pollution.” This approach could also be applied to many other urban issues, such as tolls and express lanes.


The future largest fleet of connected cars in the world?


According to Ford, this future fleet of connected cars should quickly become the biggest in the world in the years to come. It already operates its Chariot ride-share vans in several cities. The cloud is also intended to be used by drivers with older cars, as it has been designed to work with the existing SYNC 3 platform, which has been in use for some years.

Ford may well invite other carmakers to join its platform, as it is largely similar to previous collaborations with other automakers, one of which saw Ford work with General Motors on common transmissions such as the 10-speed auto. A collaboration between Ford and other carmakers would be of benefit the entire automotive industry. 


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