This blog is a re-post of an article authored by several analysts at our IDC CEMA offices to address the impact of recent events like the VW emissions scandal on the ongoing transformations taking place in the global automotive industry.
Recently, my IDC Manufacturing Insights colleague from the IDC CEMA offices, Lorenzo Veronesi, contributed to an article about the impact of the VW emissions events on the broader automotive technology landscape. Below is an excerpt of the article. To read the article in its entirety, please follow this link.
The recent Volkswagen emissions scandal has highlighted a trend that has been under way for many years: the convergence of IT and the wider economy of manufactured products. Cars have long been equipped with computing chips and sensors, but more recently, cars are becoming heavily computerized, with entertainment and communications systems, engine management, electronic driver aids, and even fully autonomous driving controls all integrated into a single platform. The cars are no longer vehicles with computing elements. The cars themselves are now advanced computing systems.
We are seeing this trend replicating across the manufactured economy, with computing and networking built into virtually everything, from industrial controls to household appliances. This is occurring because the information technology industry has shifted to a new phase of development: the 3rd Platform of IT
In recent years, continued miniaturization of computing has enabled transformation of the IT industry. Much computing and data transfer now takes place on much smaller devices, such as smartphones and wearables. Network technologies allow mobile devices to be constantly connected, while huge amounts of information is shared and stored in the cloud. And Big Data/analytics is creating new possibilities and sifting greater value from all the new data being created.
In some respects, this trend culminates in the Internet of Things, in which all devices can be fully networked, capable of communicating with other devices, users, manufacturers, technicians, and third-party service providers to offer layers of additional functionality. They are smart devices that can be programmed to adapt to different kinds of situations.
These developments bring wonderful advantages. In automobiles, they allow a car to analyze and adapt to driving conditions (weather, road conditions, etc.), driving style, or fuel efficiency. It is a small step to imagine emissions testing as yet another driving condition to be managed and optimized.
The VW case shows that the pace of change toward smart machines will require adjustments all around. Manufacturers will still seek advantages, but they will have to recognize the differences between testing regulators’ limits and gaming the system. Authorities must also adjust and change the nature and practice of regulation, monitoring, and testing. In this article, we highlight a few possible far-reaching results of the VW case, in which the company abused public trust through clever use of its smart machines.
Again, to read the complete article, please follow this link.