Though never managing to successfully predict what each forthcoming generation of mobile technology should deliver to satisfy future users, the industry has nonetheless reached some consensus on the use cases for 5G communications. Machine to machine communications is one. 5G should enable the IoT, the future where all online-enabled objects will quietly pass on data to each other or to a central computer.
Facilitating the use of mobile networks by connected or autonomous cars, remotely controlled industrial robots, telehealth systems, and smart city infrastructure are also all expected to figure large in 5G thinking. There is a common notion the industry is hoping that 5G will solve problems we don't have today, but those that could hold us back years in the future - and one of the best examples to such a statement is a driverless car.
This particular report addresses the Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) progress in reaching its ultimate goal - to make a car "intelligent" enough to safely drive without a human participation. It also updates the status of a driverless car development in connection with transition to the 5G era: the industry identified driverless cars as most viable form of ITS, dominating the roadways by 2040 and sparking dramatic changes in vehicular travel. The report discusses the specifics of the 5G era as they are seen by the industry at the present time with emphasis on what 5G technologies can bring to the driverless car.
Such a car was considered by many as a scientists' dream only 10-15 years ago; now it is a reality and all predictions are that driverless cars hit the roads in 6-8 years; with commercial introduction already in 2017. Fully developed driverless car needs support of communications systems evolving in the transition to 5G; and these two developments are interrelated - a driverless car becomes a 5G use case.
The report provides overview of the current status of the driverless car development, pictures the future steps, which the industry is planning, analyzes roadblocks, and emphasizes the importance of standardization - several organizations are working in this direction. The analysis concentrates on technological and marketing aspects of driverless cars and also on the status of the industry.
The survey of driverless cars projects currently underway is conducted; as well as the survey of related patents (2015-2016). Initial marketing statistics are included.
The detailed analysis of two important components of a driverless car - lidar (one of the main components of ADAS) and the communications gear - "connected car" - is performed.
A driverless car, for simplicity, may be described as a combination of a connected car, ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems); and other parts. The ADAS important part is driverless car "eyes" - an instrument that can "see" surroundings and provide the information to the car for the analysis and taking relevant actions. One of most promising technologies that makes cars "to see" is lidar, which is composed of laser and other parts. The report provides the detailed analysis of lidar technical and marketing characteristic and the survey of the industry.
The detailed analysis of connected cars specifics, standardization, technical characteristics and economics are presented in this report. The companies - contributors to the connected car market development - are identified and their portfolios are analyzed.
The report also emphasizes the importance of 5G mobile networking as a basis for driverless car ITS revolution. With "ultimate" ITS, it is expected that safety on the roads will be drastically improved and the society will be free from massive amount of injuries and deaths on the roads as well as from damages to the economy due to accidents and traffic jams.
The report is intended to a wide audience of technical and managerial staff involved in the advanced ITS development; and for specialists in communications technologies that support such a development.