By guest writer Utsav Arora
Cloud technology is a revolutionary modern technology, transforming every sector of modern life day by day. This tech has made its way into multiple industries and business platforms, allowing these enterprises to develop applications faster and store data more efficiently. Cloud technology has advocated the development of futuristic innovations in every industry it has laid its hands upon. Similarly, cloud technology is accelerating the digital transformation of the automotive industry, bringing advanced technologies like high-performance computing and cloud networking to the humble car.
The cloud-based automotive solutions market is growing at a rapid pace and is estimated to reach a whopping value of USD 66.95 billion revenue, at a CAGR of 19.88 percent by 2022. This signifies the substantial impact of cloud technology in developing connected cars similar to the Tesla Model S, autonomous driving, shared mobility, deeper customer insights, and digital manufacturing for the automotive industry. Automobiles are getting more connected than ever before, as cloud computing continues to work its magic on the automotive industry in the following areas:
Most vehicles that roll out into the market today are nothing less than a supercomputer on wheels. Modern automobiles receive a lot of data from the various sensors installed on the vehicle. The data includes real-time information about tire pressure, GPS, temperature, and many more.
Using cloud computing, automobiles can store this data reliably in the cloud storage and then later relay this data to the vehicle’s telematics and infotainment system, advanced driver assistance systems, and mobility services. Hence, cloud computing ensures a seamless distribution of data within all the vehicle’s systems.
Self-driving cars have always piqued the interest of the human mind. These robot-like cars drive on their own, without any need for human intervention. These self-driving cars analyze the environment in real-time and make driving decisions with the help of super artificial intelligence algorithms and advanced driver assistance systems. Sensors and real-time HD maps send a seamless flow of data to the driver assistance systems, enabling the car to drive on its own while simultaneously keeping its drivers and passengers safe.
However, all the wonders of truly autonomous driving are confined beyond the limitations of a complex simulation environment. This is where cloud technology comes in as the savior, handling huge volumes of data required for a smooth autonomous drive. All autonomous driving systems are cloud-based, as all the crucial real-time data must be validated and tested rigorously to ensure that things don’t go south on any end.
Automotive companies have started prioritizing digitization in all their production processes, helping them to ensure top-notch quality for all their products. Robotics, AI, and other digital technologies have dramatically transformed the automotive manufacturing process. The production rate and quality are reaching new heights with significantly less probability of defects.
Cloud computing has helped automakers develop intelligent algorithms based on the cloud data of their machinery. This, in turn, has assisted the automakers with various production factors like predictive maintenance, data analytics with reporting, safety, and real-time data monitoring of the products.
Hence, the production environment functions seamlessly as a result and any errors in the production process are also reduced. Cloud computing has also benefited various organizations associated with the automotive industry in sectors like operations, finances, and security.
Deeper customer insights
Cloud technology grants the automotive company access to powerful tools and services specialized in big data and analytics. With the power of these services, every automotive company can gather the best consumer insights related to their products. The Query Engine stores, analyzes, and represents the customer insights in informative graphical representations like dashboards, charts, and graphs. This detailed structure of consumer data helps the automaker to understand the analytical trends for manufacturing, supply chain, marketing, predictive QnA, and customer behavior.
Shared mobility is a mode of shared transportation, wherein a car or bike is shared among all the users in the platform on a per-need basis. This system reduces the clogging of traffic on the road and also reduces the carbon footprint. With cloud-based applications, these shared mobility services can get access to live navigation services in the form of a Google Map.
With the help of this tech, every user can estimate the quickest route to their destination alongside live traffic updates or can search for alternate routes in case they get stranded in heavy traffic. Smart algorithms can also calculate the nearest customer to the driver’s side. This reduces both the driver’s idle time and the customer’s wait time, providing a flawless shared mobility service.
Any automotive production process requires a significantly large infrastructure with all the latest IT hardware equipment. Setting up all the requirements, monitoring the resources, maintenance, and labor costs all require substantial expenses. Today, various cloud providers like Azure, AWS, GCP, and others are extending a helping hand to manufacturers to reduce all the overhead costs.
All these cloud providers have a dedicated set of expert engineers to handle the setup and maintenance of the IT infrastructure. Also, these providers offer their IT services at comparatively lower prices than an in-house setup. Simultaneously, automakers can also specify exactly what type of services they will be needing, thus paying only for the services they select.
There has always been a high demand for powerful infrastructures, servers with high computational abilities, engineering simulation software, and large data analytics in the automotive industry. Maintaining such complex systems requires a lot of effort and dedication. The servers used in the automotive setup have the provision of auto scalability available.
Similarly, automakers also require on-demand storage and computation facilities to set up all their processes within the least time span possible. This is where cloud computing comes in handy, as it is equipped with all the advanced capabilities and time-efficient algorithms to make light work of all the complex processes at the user’s end.
Security and data backups
A Cloud service provides continuous monitoring and high availability of the storage and computes entities of any automotive facility. Cloud service providers provide a high degree of security like data encryption and less risk of failures in the system. The Cloud service collects all the important information relevant to the automotive entities like data relayed by smart vehicles on the road, customer sales and service records, and manufacturing and supply chain data. Cloud services continuously backup all this information at regular intervals of time, ensuring that this critical data doesn’t get wiped out in case of accidental data wipeouts or sudden system failures.
Just like Electric Vehicles, cloud-based applications will definitely make their way into the vehicles. While people do argue that these systems hinder privacy and do ‘too much monitoring’, we are certain that just like other technologies, this tech will get accepted, once it makes its way into the mainstream cars. Every tech faces a challenge when it’s rolled out, and cloud tech has already proven its worth in other domains, so we are pretty optimistic, that’ll transform our lives for the better.
Utsav Arora bring an experience of over 2 years to the table, in the domains of content management and marketing. He is a big-time car enthusiast, and spends a lot of time driving, reading and researching about cars.