The connected car movement has brought together the most innovative minds in the auto and tech industries in the spirit of collaboration and mutual benefit. It is not surprising, therefore, that this collaboration would create a collective defense of what could be a threat to innovation and rapid development of connected car technologies.
Recently executives from wireless carriers AT&T, Sprint, Verizon, Ericsson, Qualcomm and Here (a company owned by Nokia) met with top officials of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to register their concerns over newly regulated access to broadband networks. Essentially, these executives asked for exemption from the agency’s upcoming rules on net neutrality, which would prohibit Internet service providers from throttling back speed and/or blocking access to specific websites.
CTIA -The Wireless Association trade group has a well-defined position on net neutrality that is based on the Telecommunications Act of 1996, which restricts the FCC from subjecting wireless broadband to common carriage regulation and calls for a mobile-specific approach to regulation in recognition of its differences and unique consumer benefits.
Agreeing with CTIA and the wireless companies’ position, GM’s Global Connected Consumer executive director, Harry Lightsey III, delivered remarks on behalf of the automaker. “Mobile broadband being delivered to a car moving at 75 mph down a highway – or for that matter, stuck in a massive spontaneous traffic jam – is a fundamentally different phenomenon from a wired broadband connection to a consumer’s home, and merits continued consideration under distinct rules that take this into account.” A “critical distinction” among rules for fixed and mobile Internet traffic was urged, claiming the new limitations for the mobile industry would be a threat to innovation in the development of the connected car.
Net neutrality and all other regulatory rules governing wireless data transmission must be managed in ways that don’t strangle or hinder the connected car movement. We are seeing tech industries in other parts of the world rapidly creating and deploying their connected living ecosystems with the relative cooperation of their respective governments. It would be a pity to surrender the leadership position in the U.S. simply because of competing agendas.
Possessing a shared vision on the promise of the connected car will bring the developmental and regulatory entities together with common understandings of what role each entity plays. Without this shared vision, the threat to innovation is real. And the threat extends far beyond that of the connected car.
Source: Execs Pitch FCC on Connected Cars – The Hill