11 Jul Audi will add 5G connectivity to cars by 2020
Connected cars are the future. There’s no doubt about it. Of course, this doesn’t have to mean driverless cars, but certainly, the more connected cars are the greater the chances that driverless cars will become a practical reality. Cars are probably more connected at the moment than you realize and they will soon become even more connected. And, as usual, Audi will be leading the charge.
Almost all premium car brands offer some sort of data connection such as a WiFi hotspot, Android Auto or Apple CarPlay. At the moment, this kind of connection is limited to 4G (at best). But 4G will soon be replaced by 5G and Audi promise to introduce the new mobile network in their vehicles by 2020.
How is Audi bringing 5G to their range?
To make this all possible, Audi is partnering with Chinese company Huawei. And it looks like this new mobile network will be vital to the success of Audi’s V2X technology. This is Audi’s new platform that allows for vehicle-to-infrastructure and vehicle-to-vehicle connectivity. We’ve talked about the former when discussing the new traffic light assist functionality that was recently rolled out. This allows Audis to connect to oncoming traffic lights in certain cities across the country and have information about when they will change delivered to their car’s dashboard.
Unfortunately, the technology will be developed and delivered to China first before the US and Europe. Part of the reason, alongside Audi partnering with the Chinese firm, is because China is aggressively pushing this kind of connected technology onto its cities. In order for Audi’s V2X system to work well, cities have to be as connected as the car. This isn’t going to happen anytime soon in the US but China are aiming to have 90% of their cities connected by 2020.
The ultimate aim is to offer assisted driving to citizens in cities according to a Huawei spokesperson. This would be things like cars being able to read pedestrian crossings and oncoming traffic lights and react accordingly.
Moving on from this, 5G will also help autonomous cars to connect to the clouds of auto manufacturers and to other cars around them. This would allow for real-time data to be transmitted to the cloud so that manufacturers can analyze and adjust to. It will also allow cars to interact with others around them, learning together and making each other aware of their positioning and movements.
What is 5G?
5G stands for fifth-generation mobile networks. Which is actually exactly what it is. It is the fifth version of mobile networks—the network you use every day to make texts and calls when not connected to a Wi-Fi network. It’s not just a new version, however. 5G is set to be much, much faster than 4G so much so that many more use cases have been opened up.
The availability of 5G will enable Audis and other brands to become more connected than ever before and help push autonomous driving forward.