In the mad rush to develop technologies that will truly enable the connected car, we find brand-specific app development platforms being shed in favor of more standardized solutions that offer predictability, higher resilience from hackers and malware and lower cost due to economy of scale. In order to deliver faster connected services for next generation semi-autonomous vehicle data processing, infotainment, cockpit clusters and productivity tools, automotive-grade Ethernet hardware and software is emerging as the new vehicle connectivity standard.
Among other chip manufacturers, Freescale has announced its first automotive-grade Ethernet chipset and software, paving the way for car makers to install 100Mbps networks in vehicles. These networks will enable vehicles to communicate with each other as well as with external infrastructure in a highly reliable manner that addresses continuous connectivity concerns that have surrounded V2V and V2I tech development of late.
As many driver-assist and V2V technologies become federally mandated, the need for high-speed connectivity and broad bandwidth becomes crucial as cloud-based data processing is exchanged with the vehicle while other connected services are needed (or wanted) to augment the driving experience. A new IEEE 802.3 study group to advance Broadcom’s BroadR-Reach vehicle Ethernet technology intends to drive adaptation of the use of unshielded single twisted pair cable to deliver 100Mbps of data, effectively bypassing Category 5 cabling which has been traditionally used at a higher cost, higher weight and with less reliability in the automotive environment.
This innovation is also supported by the OPEN Alliance Special Interest Group, which supports an open, scalable and standardized Ethernet-based network. To realize the promise of Audio Video Bridging (AVB), a set of IEEE standards for transporting audio and other real-time content over Ethernet without the need for multiple switches, the group is promoting standardization and broad adaptation of the technology that currently has over 60 member companies in support.
We believe standardization of connectivity technologies is practical when developing connected car platforms, and cross-industry collaboration will drive innovation and speed time-to-market. The movement to bring Ethernet to cars is not a threat to proprietary technology development; rather, it is an enabler of development that will continue to launch connected car technologies in new, exciting directions.
Source: Ethernet is Coming to Cars – Computerworld