The biggest demand driver for smart transportation is the growing need for smart services globally, according to a new report from Transparency Market Research. The global smart transportation market is forecast to grow from $45.1 billion in 2014 to $176.5 billion in 2021, according to the market research firm. This translates into a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18.5 percent from 2015 to 2021.
Many of these emerging smart technologies focus on providing information to drivers as well as improving driver safety. Services can range from providing real-time traffic and navigation information and improving both vehicle and highway safety to reducing emissions and improving freight and supply chain efficiency.
The report, Smart Transportation Market Report, also finds that the increase in traffic congestion, thanks to increased automobile sales, is creating a need for intelligent transportation systems and a growing awareness for driver safety.
As part of this trend, there is a convergence happening between the automotive and healthcare industries, with the automotive industry integrating health, wellness and well-being (HWW) technologies into automobiles, according to Frost & Sullivan.
Automotive HWW non-critical features such as reconfigurable seats and mood lighting are expected to be integrated in 30 to 40 percent of all cars by 2018, while critical functionality such as blood pressure monitoring is forecast to account for nearly 5 percent of vehicles by 2025, according to Frost & Sullivan.
This convergence goes hand-in-hand with the move to cloud services. The Frost & Sullivan report, Executive Outlook of Health, Wellness, and Wellbeing Technologies in the Global Automotive Industry, finds that key global OEMs are building strategies to include “built-in, brought-in or cloud-enabled health monitoring systems in cars as standard, optional or advanced features.” This is expected to result in increased collaboration among multiple industries including healthcare and information technology.
“The first wave of HWW proliferation in the automotive industry will focus on measuring and monitoring to benefit drivers and passengers through early detection of ailments and assistance in emergencies,” said Frost & Sullivan. “The automotive industry aims to achieve its zero-accident, zero-fatality goal using support from synergistic technologies that enable advances in autonomous driving and advanced driver assistance systems.”
“In response to the large aged population of drivers in several societies, automakers are already developing cars that can anticipate a driver's heart attack or sudden disability to bring the vehicle to a safe halt, and alert doctors. Ford and Toyota – among mass-market OEMs – and luxury automakers such as BMW and Audi are the pioneers targeting integration of HWW features into their next-generation products,” said Neelam Barua, automotive & transportation industry analyst, Frost & Sullivan, in a statement.
An example of one of these technologies is the Smart Steering Wheel innovation from Hoffmann + Krippner Inc., in cooperation with Guttersberg Consulting. The SensoFoil sensing technology, which can now measure sensitivity in addition to position, can be used to add an extra level of safety to steering wheels, said the company.
This sensor can be integrated into the rim of the steering wheel to monitor the changing pressure or motion of hands on a steering wheel. If the motion ceases or the pressure stops changing, it indicates that someone is dozing off or falling asleep or a there is a medical emergency.
In these cases, the car can be programmed to alert the driver to wake-up or the automobile’s automated system could trigger corrective measures such as pulling the car off the road. In case of a medical emergency, the car could drive itself to the closest medical emergency center while sending out an alert to the appropriate authorities, said Hoffman+Krippner.
The sensor also can be programmed to have up to ten “hot spot” locations that can be programmed on the steering wheel to provide various functions such as entertainment, communications, emergency, as well as car environment and lights.
“Pressure Sensing SensoFoil cost effectively provides extra features and capabilities to a diverse range of products,” said Jens Kautzor, CEO of Hoffmann + Krippner, Inc., in a statement. “In addition, this sensing technology requires very little external energy since power consumption is very low. The sensor system is insensitive to electromagnetic radiation and therefore ideal for the automotive, aerospace and medical sectors.”
The challenges of implementing these new technologies will include the involvement of the Food & Drug Administration and related regulations that could hinder the use of medical devices in vehicles and mixed levels of consumer awareness about automotive HWW along with privacy and security concerns around mHealth, according to Frost & Sullivan. A bright spot is the European New Car Assessment Program that is “trying to provide assessment services and standardize safety technologies in cars,” according to the market researcher.
Another segment of cloud-based services is connected infotainment services, including off-board navigation, social media integration, music streaming, and in-car Wi-Fi and related application frameworks, which is driving the adoption of cloud-based vehicle platforms enabled by embedded or tethered 4G broadband cellular connectivity, said ABI Research.
By 2020, more than 40 million cloud-enabled vehicles will ship annually, according to ABI Research. The report, Automotive Infotainment, Commercial Vehicle Telematics and Automotive Safety and Autonomous Driving Research Services, finds that “more strategic functionality such as OTA for vehicle lifecycle management, analytics and big data for smart mobility and autonomous driving, and how cars will interact with the wider IoE for services such as vehicle-to-grid and vehicle-to-home will be the key drivers propelling the cloud into a mainstream automotive technology.”
“Despite the numerous benefits of the cloud including flexibility, scalability, real-time updates, and customization, the specific nature of automotive solutions imposes the need for hybrid solutions, guaranteeing uninterrupted performance when the connection is temporarily lost, for example, through hybrid navigation as touted by vendors,” said Dominique Bonte, VP and practice director at ABI Research, in a statement.
“On the other hand, vehicle-centric and safety-critical features such as ADAS and automated driving will heavily rely on on-board processing due to low latency, availability, and reliability requirements for features such as collision detection with the cloud playing a more complementary role. It is this delicate balance between on-board and cloud-based service delivery that will constitute the very character of next-generation connected car solutions,” he continued.
The challenges, agreed Bonte, will be growing concerns about privacy breaches and security threats, which impacts safety.
In the services segment, cloud services leads the pack in terms of revenue, recording $19.4 billion in 2014, according to Transparency Market Research. Analysts attribute the revenue to an increase in remote data access for better control of transportation. The report also forecasts cloud services to be the fastest growing segment for smart transportation over the forecast period, with a CAGR of 18.7 percent.
Other demand drivers around the implementation of smart transportation systems includes in vehicle parking assistance with proper utilization of space and easy identification of parking spots, and emerging smart cities globally that will create an opportunity for the smart transportation market, said Transparency Market Research.
In the solutions segment, the Transparency report finds that traffic management was the largest segment in 2014 with a value of $16.1 billion, and is forecast to dominate the market during the forecast period. Key drivers include increased need for traffic congestion reduction with implementation of efficiency freight management and tolling systems. Increased automobile sales also is creating more demand for smart traffic management systems.
Europe is expected to be the biggest player in the smart transportation market by region in 2015. It has the highest market share thanks to reformed traffic regulation by governments as well as the presence of major vendors, including Alstom SA and Siemens AG, in the region, said Transparency. Together, Europe and North America will account for more than 55 percent of the global smart transportation market in 2014.